Meet the team: Tim Johnson


Tim Johnson, JMG Group Executive Chair

How did your career in insurance begin?

At the time, Royal Insurance (now RSA) was known as having the best graduate training programmes and so I joined there straight from university in 1990. It gave me a good start and allowed me to dip my toe into commercial based finance, which is what interested me most. I mean, I would have preferred to have been a sports professional – the dream – but that was a non-starter!

How did your career in insurance continue?

I finished the two-year graduate programme at Royal Insurance and had worked out that the broker route, rather than insurer, was for me. I went on to work at AON for a decade and then to Towergate Insurance where I became CEO of their underwriting operations. I was at Towergate for 10 years and then joined Stackhouse Poland in 2014 as CEO, part of a team which led a management buyout, backed by Synova.

What brought you to JMG Group?

I worked with Nick Houghton for 10 years at Towergate and we kept in touch when we both left. We had conversations while Nick was MD of JM Glendinning and saw each other couple of times a year. The opportunity to join JMG Group in 2020 was perfectly timed as we’d sold Stackhouse Poland in early 2019 and I was consulting for Synova.

What do you enjoy about your role?

I like being able to help the board with things that I can add value to, specifically with strategy and M&A. I like working as part of a high-quality team. I’m certainly not a lone wolf.

What’s the secret to your success?

A bit of hard work and a lot of luck.

What advice would you give to someone starting their career in the industry?

Work hard and be lucky. And be open to the opportunities which are out there. We are all guilty of underselling the insurance industry as a fantastic career path, but it truly is. There are lots of opportunities to progress and lots of strands to careers in the industry which are rewarding and interesting. I’d recommend exploring your options and seeing which route is best for you.

What’s next for JMG Group?

We are very early into our growth journey, but we’ve had a very decent start and we are sticking to our plan. We will continue to do what we do best and that is to look after clients; win new clients; attract and retain the best staff in the industry; and grow by selecting quality and like-minded businesses to partner with.

What Group CEO, Nick Houghton, says:

“I don’t believe in fate. I believe the relationships you invest in today create opportunities for you in the future.  And this is how Tim and I ended up working together again.  We’d worked together for years and kept in touch when we went our separate ways. Then, suddenly, Tim was looking for a business to invest in with SYNOVA and we were looking to do an MBO. For me, to have Tim on the team and to be able to draw upon his experience is a fantastic help…as well as great fun as we are both golf nuts! Collectively, we’re building something we are really proud of.”