Mark Wood began his career with Price Waterhouse, qualifying as a chartered accountant in the London office. He moved to Commercial Union’s Investment Department in 1979 and became Treasurer in 1981. In 1983 he moved to Barclays as Global Head of Cash Management with a desk in London and New York. Chief Executive roles at subsidiaries of B&C, MAI and the AA followed. In 1996 Mark was appointed Chief Executive of AXA UK, with the mandate to create a market leading composite. The integration of Equity and Law, Provincial Insurance, Guardian Royal Exchange, PPP and Sun Life, established AXA as the UK’s third largest insurer. In 2001 he was appointed Chief Executive of Prudential UK and Europe. Implementation of the ‘1000 day plan’ re-established Prudential as the UK’s largest life insurer. Profits increased by 40% between 2002 and 2005. This transformation programme has featured on MBA programmes at Warwick, Lausanne, Harvard and Wellington.
Paternoster, founded by Mark in 2006 with £500m of Private Equity backing quickly became the market leader in Bulk Annuities and was acquired by Goldman Sachs in 2010. Subsequently Mark originated the buyout of RAC Motoring Services from Aviva, securing financing from Carlyle. During this period Mark was Chairman and Chief Executive of Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT) Employee Benefits, Chairman of Chaucer, the Lloyds Underwriter, and of start-ups Beta Advertising and Digitalis Reputation. Mark also served on the board of Which? Financial Services.
Currently, Mark is a Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee of RAC Motor Services (GIC and CVC), Chairman of The Innovation Group (Carlyle), Chairman of MyPolicy (Inflexion), Chairman of PensionBee (private), Chairman of Digitalis (private) and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC).
Mark was Deputy Chairman of the ABI from 1997 to 2000, Chairman of the Board of Governors at Amesbury School from 1998 to 2006 and Trustee of the NSPCC between 1999 and 2006.