Chaucer considers quitting London to reduce its tax bill

One of the City’s last remaining Lloyd’s insurers is considering quitting the capital in order to cut its tax bill.

Chaucer Holdings is looking for an alternative location overseas that could offer the company a lower tax take than the UK. “It’s on our list of items to look at this year,” chief executive Robert Stuchbery said in an interview with Bloomberg. “Our peer group has an advantage over us when it comes to tax.”

Chaucer, Amlin and Novae Group are the only companies among 19 listed Lloyd’s insurers to still have their headquarters in the UK. Companies such as Hiscox, Omega and Hardy Underwriting have switched their base to Bermuda. Brit Insurance last year announced plans to move to the Netherlands, and Beazley is moving to Ireland because of lower tax rates.

Chaucer would join a rising swell of companies across a number of sectors threatening to quit the UK over its tax burden.

“I would much prefer to stay in the UK and have a corporation tax environment which put us on a level playing field with our international competition,” Stuchbery said. “If we’re not able to have that as an option then you have to look to do something.”