Protection campaigner Le Beau to retire

Protection Review co-founder, campaigner and high-profile life and health consultant Peter Le Beau MBE is retiring from the industry at the end of the year.

Le Beau began his career at British and European and in 1981 moved to Swiss Re where he was initially head of underwriting and later head of UK marketing. He set up independent consultancy Le Beau Visage, which focused on differentiation in the protection sector.

In 2005 he formed Protection Review with Andy Couchman. He also set up strategic discussion group called The-Net-Work, and began the Income Protection Task Force with Clive Waller to promote a greater awareness of the values of income protection.

He has held several non-executive director roles over the years and was awarded the MBE for services to insurance in June 2009.

Protection Review will continue with Kevin Carr, Andy Couchman, Roger Edwards, Jo Miller and Frances Delhoy managing the business as usual. Peter will continue to contribute ideas and attend events at his leisure.

The Income Protection Task Force will continue to be managed for the rest of the year by Peter Le Beau and the existing IPTF Executive Committee, which consists of Dave Heeney, Richard Walsh, Julie Hopkins, Roy McLoughlin, Kevin Carr and John Gillman. Plans for the future of the Task Force will be announced in due course.

Le Beau Visage and all NED roles will cease before the end of 2017 although a precise retirement date for his retirement as FINEOS chairman has not been determined.

He will continue to run The Network with Frances Delhoy.

Le Beau says: “I’ve decided that now is the time to step away from the industry. I think there is a need for fresh voices and new leaders with energy and new ideas. Over the next few months I will be transitioning out of a range of activities, but I will still be involved with some consultancy work and will continue to run The-Net-Work. I’ve had an incredibly satisfying career and will have been involved in the industry for almost 50 years when I retire.”

LifeSearch CEO Tom Baigrie says: “Peter has been a force for good in the world of protection for decades. He is the most caring and collegiate of men, a genuine professional with his heart in the right place and a huge streak of altruism running right through him. Though he truly deserves his retirement he will be sorely missed. I first met him in 2004 at a conference he organised to improve what the industry did for consumers. That has been his lifelong professional purpose and he has worked tirelessly over the years to encourage insurers to do things better. His polite persistence has served the protection consumer and this our market, in a way no-one else has equalled. The establishment of the IPTF and then the Seven Families initiative has been key to the recent growth of Income Protection sales.”

Mail on Sunday personal finance editor Jeff Prestridge says: “A man mountain of an individual who has always striven for best practice in financial protection insurance. He has put financial protection on the map and has been a great cheerleader for the industry without ever forgetting that the consumer must come first. Of course, Seven Families was a crowning success. Without his energy, his commitment to the consumer and his cajoling, the financial protection insurance would not be where it is today – more consumer-centric.”