July 30, 2020 / 2:45 PM / 9 days ago

Lloyd's of London sets 20% target of women on boards by end-2023

FILE PHOTO: A man enters the Lloyd's of London building in the City of London financial district in London, Britain, April 16, 2019. Picture taken April 16, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

LONDON (Reuters) - Lloyd’s of London on Thursday set a target for women to make up at least 20% of boards and executive committees at its member firms by the end of 2023, compared to 15% currently, as it seeks to improve diversity in the commercial insurance market.

Lloyd’s has been under fire since admitting last year it had problems with sexual harassment and daytime drinking in the market, which employs nearly 50,000 people.

Britain’s markets watchdog has told the bosses of commercial insurance companies to stamp out bad behaviour in the industry and improve diversity, or risk losing their jobs.

“While we have put in place a series of actions to accelerate change, it is abundantly clear that we have much work to do and we must be impatient in our resolve to get there,” Lloyd’s of London CEO John Neal said.

Lloyd’s also said it was setting an interim target for 35% of broader leadership positions to be filled by women by end-2023, with the aim of “parity over the next decade”.

Women currently fill 29% of leadership positions, Lloyd’s said.

The 330-year-old Lloyd’s, which last month apologised for its “shameful” role in the 18th and 19th Century Atlantic slave trade, said it was trying to improve its collection of ethnicity data in order to set a target for ethnicity in the second quarter of 2021.

It said only 52% of market firms were able to provide data on ethnicity currently.

The data for those firms showed 56% of people described themselves as white, 4% as Asian and 1% each as Black and mixed ethnicity. Two percent described themselves as “other” and 36% chose not to say.

Reporting by Carolyn Cohn; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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