James began his career as an underwriter with Chubb in New York. He later joined Brockbank at Lloyd's to establish the non-marine underwriting practice and served as Chief Underwriting Officer.
In 2003 James became CEO of DUAL International and oversaw their transformation into an MGU with a GWP in excess of €100 million. In 2008 James was recruited by JTL to establish Thistle, the group's underwriting agency. In 2011 James became a strategic investor and Chairman of GB Underwriting Limited, a privately owned MGU.