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2019 Women to Watch EMEA: Holly Shepherd

Holly Shepherd

Holly Shepherd
Shepherd Compello Ltd.
Age: 35

When Holly Shepherd graduated from university in 2006, she started in the family business, then known as EPG Insurance Services, on the compliance side.

“We were a small Lloyd’s broker with five or six employees when I started. We were in a basement and we had about three desks and a dart board,” Ms. Shepherd said.

Today, the firm that was founded in 2004 by her father has grown into a global entity with three trading companies, including the Lloyd’s of London broker Shepherd Compello Ltd.

Ms. Shepherd said the main role she has played in growing and leading each of the businesses is among her most significant career accomplishments, as well as recruiting “talented and like-minded individuals” to develop the business and move it forward.

She also takes pride that Shepherd Compello has managed to retain its familyowned culture. “We champion diversity, not only gender diversity, but cultural diversity, and socioeconomic diversity,” she said.

Being a smaller broker allows the opportunity to “brainstorm and come up with new ideas” and help clients “think outside the box,” she said.

“In this day and age, the worth of a broker is being diluted, especially in the bigger companies. Brokers are turning into postboxes, and they’re losing their worth, and that’s why commissions are being cut,” Ms. Shepherd said.

“The Future of Lloyd’s Blueprint would quite easily see us with less broker activity and involvement. Brokers have got to prove their worth, and you can only do that by coming up with innovative solutions and constantly evolving and changing, and I’m proud we can do that here,” she said.

“It’s very impressive, what she’s done and the decisions she’s made together with the team around her,” said Duncan McLure Fisher, founder and CEO of MotorEasy Ltd. and a nonexecutive director on Shepherd Compello’s board, who has worked with her for over 10 years.

“In the London insurance market, Shepherd Compello is one of the last family businesses. Her father John Shepherd founded it. Holly has transformed it,” he said.

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