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Hastings founder passes away

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Gundlach, who established Hastings Direct in 1996, led the business until its sale to Insurance Australia Group in 2006. He also founded Advantage Insurance in Gibraltar in 2002.

Gundlach was also a successful film producer and launched his own movie production company. His initial production was the movie, Get Low starring Robert Duvall, Sissy Spacek and Bill Murray.

Commenting on Gundlach's passing, a spokeswoman for Hastings told Post: "We were greatly saddened to hear of the death David Gundlach, who passed away on 15 October at his home in the United States, aged 56."

"It was David who secured the memorable 1066 telephone numbers to complement the Hastings name and this formed the foundations of the business in the early years before the internet became established.

"Those who worked with him will have their own special memories of David, who could often be seen on the contact centre floor and in other areas of the business long after the rest of us had gone home. Apart from Hastings Direct, David's other great passion was the Cinema and in recent years he successfully turned his hand to producing films in Hollywood."

Gundlach also featured on this year's Rich List with his estimate £100m fortune placing him at number 703.

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