The series of staff defections at Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT) following its acquisition by Marsh & McLennan (MMC) earlier this year is “not a crisis,” company CEO Dan Glaser has told the Financial Times (FT).
Speaking in an interview with the publication, Glaser said that voluntary employee turnover at JLT since the takeover had been similar to the same period last year.
However, he did acknowledge that some staff could be put off by the prospect of working in a large company such as MMC.
“There will be people who would rather be a bigger fish in a small pond,” he said. “Our environment won’t suit everyone, but it will suit most people.”
Glaser’s comments follow several months of high-profile defections of JLT staff, who have largely moved over to rival brokers, sparking concerns that they may also be moving clients over with them.
For example, Kurt Schreiber, JLT’s Hong Kong Chief Executive, departed the company earlier this year, as have many people from JLT’s reinsurance business, including Chairman Ross Howard.
Back in May, MMC even took legal action against broker NFP Property & Casualty Services over the departure of 13 former JLT staff.
While Glaser was keen to play down the significance of these defections, he did tell the FT that MMC would likely have to deal with some “near-term choppiness” in its growth rate due to the JLT integration process.
“We’re realistic about what big integrations mean in people businesses,” he said on an earnings call in April.
Nevertheless, the broker is already looking ahead to its next acquisition targets, Glaser said, and is ready to spend between $400 million and $800 million on deals over the next couple of years.
“There are definitely more deals to come, but there won’t be something of JLT’s size for a number of years until we’ve brought our leverage down,” he remarked.