Philip Johnson identifies supply chain complexities and economic risks as key threats for businesses

Insurers can expect to see a continual focus on complex supply chain issues this year according to FM Global’s new Northern Europe operations vice-president and manager Philip Johnson (pictured).

In an interview with StrategicRISK after the insurer announced a series of key changes to its management team, Johnson outlined several key trends for 2014.

On supply chain he said: “Outsourcing, lean manufacturing and just-in-time inventory are great strategies that minimise cost, but they can also stretch supply chains and can leave the business vulnerable. 

“Bringing risk management into the supply chain management overview can help.”

Economic risks could also feature highly for businesses, Johnson said. “Top of mind would be whether the recent optimism for the economy continues into 2014 and what this means for business. 

“Are we going to witness inward investment into Europe, or a continued reach into other markets to explore new opportunities? With new opportunities, there will be emerging risks and it’s important that we understand them.”

He added: “As the economy gradually improves, businesses will rely upon resilience more than ever to benefit from growth.  

“Risk managers have increasing needs to be able to identify, understand and quantify their exposures. With the right knowledge, they can then make good decisions to managing those exposures. The key is to embed risk management into the operations.”

In his new role, Johnson will oversee the delivery of products and services for business in the UK Nordic countries, the Netherlands, the Middle East and South Africa.

Prior to his appointment, Johnson managed FM Global’s client service delivery for Northern Europe operations and was responsible for ensuring the profit and growth of business written in the region.

He takes over from Stefano Tranquillo, who has been promoted to senior vice-president, division manager, Asia-Pacific.

Tranquillo will be based in Singapore to help the company grow its business in the region and be better positioned to respond to client needs.

Other changes to the insurer’s management team will see Chris Johnson take on the role of senior vice-president, division manager EMEA. He was previously senior vice-president, division manager, Asia-Pacific, and succeeds Kenneth Davey, who retired after 40 years’ service.

Chris Johnson will oversee all client relations, underwriting, engineering, processing and administration for the division.