The Lloyd's of London, an insurance market, has appointed Inga Beale as its new chief executive, who will be the first ever female chief executive in the history of Lloyd's.

Succeeding Richard Ward, Inga will assume her role in January 2014. She has three decades of international insurance and reinsurance experience.

Prior to accepting the current position, she had been working as the group chief executive of Canopius, a managing agent of Lloyd’s.

Prior to that, Inga worked four years with Zurich Insurance, including a period as global chief underwriting officer, and was group CEO of Converium, the Swiss mid-sized independent reinsurance company.

Inga started her career as an underwriter with Prudential, prior to spending 14 years in various international roles for GE Insurance Solutions.

Lloyd’s chairman John Nelson said, "Her CEO experience, underwriting background, international experience and operational skills, together with her knowledge of the Lloyd’s market, make Inga the ideal Chief Executive for Lloyd’s."

Lloyd’s occupies fifth place in terms of global reinsurance premium income, and is the largest surplus lines insurer in the US.