Aon moves HQ to London in boost for UK economy
Aon, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, is moving its corporate headquarters to London in a move likely to generate tens of millions of pounds in tax revenues for the UK Treasury.
By Jamie Dunkley
6:25PM GMT 13 Jan 2012
The company, which sponsors the Manchester United football team, said the move would give it “greater access to emerging markets” and would bring it closer to the London insurance market , which it described as “one of the key international hubs of insurance and risk brokerage”.
Aon has a market capitalisation of $14.8bn (£9.7bn) and specialises is insurance broking and employee benefits.
Last year, the group signed a deal to become the principal tenant of the the 47-storey tower it is developing on Leadenhall Street in the City of London, known as the “Cheesegrater”.
The group currently employs about 6,000 people in the UK. Aon said it had no plans to dramatically increase its UK headcount and would maintain its listing on the New York Stock Exchange.
The company said it also planned to increase the headcount in its current Chicago headquarters by 750 and create a further 1,000 jobs across the US this year.
Greg Case, chief executive, said: “The decisions we make today will help drive our global strategy and strengthen our growth opportunities in the years to come. The continued investment in our international operations and emerging markets is important to the growth of our firm.”
The news was welcomed by Mark Hoban, the financial secretary to the Treasury.
John Nelson, chairman of the Lloyd’s of London insurance market said: “This is very good news for the London insurance market and for Lloyd’s. It will help reinforce London’s position in the global insurance marketplace.”