Matthew Whittall has been appointed as managing director of the Motor Services division for Northern Europe at Innovation Group.
Whittall, 44, has been with Innovation for 12 years, most recently as managing director for Germany, which has grown to be the largest repair management provider in Germany as well as Innovation Group's largest revenue generating region.
He was also heavily involved in the expansion of Innovation Group into France, Spain and Belgium.
Whittall is English but has spent the last 22 years living in Germany. In 1999 he was recruited by Motorcare, the pioneering accident management company, to set up a subsidiary in Germany. Motorcare was subsequently acquired by Innovation Group in 2001.
Speaking about the particular challenges faced in the UK market, Whittall said: "The UK is where motor accident management was invented, but in recent years other countries have surpassed us in terms of making the claims process simple, quick and comfortable for both the vehicle owner and insurer.
“We have the people, the technology and the will to put this right.
“I know that no two markets are the same, but there are some universal truths which have contributed to our international success - customers want a quick, simple and reliable claims and repair service.
“Things need to happen on time without having to chase. If we can get that right we will succeed. I am also looking forward to the legislative changes on the horizon as we have never depended on referral fees for our model.
"Our motor business in the UK is much broader than many imagine. Alongside our claims business we have a nationwide SMR network, a vehicle data provision business and we offer specialist claims services such as fraud detection or uninsured loss recovery.
“We are also investing in new technology which will cut several days out of the cycle time for smaller motor claims - a true innovation."
Whittall’s first external appointment is Mike Paterson, who comes in to strengthen the team, as business development director.
Paterson, 40, has almost 20 years’ experience in the automotive information and IT marketplace and recently left Thatcham, the motor insurers’ research centre, after a four and half year period as commercial manager.