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EC News (26th April 2018)

April 26, 2018

Round-up of the weekly news and developments from the global (re)insurance market with stories from Alesco, Sompo International, Miller and more.

Alesco names Hiller as chairman of UK construction team

Alesco has appointed Martin Hiller as chairman of its UK construction team.

Hiller will take up his new role later in the year reporting to managing director of construction, John Thompson.

Hiller joins the company from Willis Towers Watson where he most recently served as head of international construction within the corporate risk and broking unit.

Before that he spent a decade at JLT as head of specialty and prior to that was a founder and managing director of JLT’s construction division.

Commenting on the appointment Thompson said: “I am delighted that we are welcoming an industry leader of Martin’s calibre to the team. Alesco has built one of the fastest growing London construction broker over the last three years, during which time we have assembled a c.50-strong team of specialists. We are attracting the industry’s strongest talent and, as a market leader in construction, Martin will be at home and influential among our expanding team of first class practitioners.”

Hiller said: “The growth of the Alesco construction practice is impressive, as is the strong leadership and focus the business has on its people and client delivery. These factors, along with the added appeal of being a broker run by brokers, were all critical in my decision to join the team. I look forward to supporting John to build out the business’ UK capability and embracing Alesco’s entrepreneurial culture as we work with the rest of the team to establish the market’s leading construction proposition.”

Sompo receives regulatory approvals for Luxembourg subsidiary

Sompo International has received regulatory approvals from the Ministry of Finance of Luxembourg to establish a new subsidiary.

SI Insurance Europe (SIIE), which will become operational later in the year, provides the company with a well-capitalized underwriting platform to service its clients across the European Economic Area (EEA) after Brexit and a foundation for strategic expansion across Continental Europe.

Takashi Kurumisawa has been appointed as CEO of this SIIE.

This year Sompo International plans to extend SIIE beyond its headquarters in Luxembourg to include operations in Italy, France, Spain, Germany and Belgium as the company integrates Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance Company of Europe Limited and further expands its European operations.

Sompo International will maintain its presence in the Lloyd’s market and its current offices in London and Continental Europe.

Chairman and CEO of Sompo International, John Charman said: “Europe is a key component to Sompo International’s strategic growth plans and SIIE now provides us with a base in Continental Europe to build our presence in the region. We continue to introduce new specialty teams and deliver a broader suite of products as we enhance our capabilities to provide exceptional and efficient service to our international clients.”

Kurumisawa added: “We are extremely pleased that Luxembourg has granted our insurance license. With continued uncertainty around Brexit, Sompo International can provide immediate clarity and commitment to our clients and brokers that we have the ability to maintain the highest levels of service in the European market.”

Miller makes duo of appointments in credit and political risks unit

Miller has further enhanced its credit and political risks unit with the hiring of Oscar Moseley and Rosie Denee in London.

Both Denee and Moseley will focus on political risk and structured credit insurance, specifically for financial institutions.

They will work with Benjamin Gibbons and James Cunningham to support the financial institutions clients and their lending portfolios.

Denee joins the company from RKH Specialty and specialises in structured credit insurance for banks.

Prior to joining Miller, Oscar spent seven years in a broking role at Marsh. He specialises in political risk and structured credit insurance for financial institutions, placing risk predominantly from Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Commenting on the new appointments, head of special risks at Miller, Timothy Press said: “Oscar and Rosie add to what is already a market-leading credit and political risk team and their broad experience and expertise with lenders, traders and corporates will ensure we continue to provide the specialist knowledge our clients need."

AIG authorises two new entities in the UK and Luxembourg

AIG is creating two new insurance companies, one in the UK and one in Luxembourg and is splitting the European business between them ahead of the UK leaving the EU.

The carrier has said that this provides clients certainty of uninterrupted UK and European insurance coverage as part of AIG’s planned restructure of its European business.

AIG Europe Ltd started preparation to be Brexit-resilient in 2015 and has since set up the two new companies, American International Group UK Ltd and AIG Europe S.A.

AIG Europe S.A. will have branches spanning the European Economic Area and Switzerland and the High Court of England and Wales has allowed AIG to notify policyholders of the transfer of portfolios.

Commenting on the restructuring Anthony Baldwin, chief executive of AIG Europe Limited said:

“We set a number of guiding principles from the very start as to how AIG would address Brexit. First amongst these was minimising disruption to clients. The great advantage of the restructuring route we have chosen is that it will give clients certainty that whatever the other unknowns of Brexit for their businesses, their European insurance coverage has been Brexit-proofed. We have already established a platform in Europe for writing future new business and renewals, and by transferring our existing business, AIG will remove uncertainty for clients, including not being reliant on the development of a grandfathering regime for existing contracts.”

The restructure is expected to take effect, and the new companies to begin writing business from 1 December 2018.

Marsh appoints Denny as UK FINPRO leader

Marsh has appointed Paul Denny as its UK financial and professional practice (FINPRO) leader.

Denny will be responsible for managing Marsh’s UK management liability, financial services, professional liability and specie risk teams.

He will report to Paul Moody, CEO of Marsh’s UK specialties division.

Denny has been with Marsh since 1989, during which time he has held a number of senior roles at the firm’s London, Boston, Chicago and New York offices including his most recent role as Northeast U.S FINPRO leader and U.S errors & omissions leader, working with professional service firms and financial institutions on their professional liability and cyber risk programmes.

Commenting on the appointment Moody said: “UK business leaders are faced with an increasingly complex array of risks, as a result of issues such as hacking and data breaches, growing international regulatory collaboration and the impending roll-out of the Senior Managers Regime to almost all UK-regulated firms.

“Paul’s considerable experience will be invaluable to our UK clients, as we continue to invest in our UK Specialties business.”

LSM enters fine art and specie market in Germany

LSM has entered the fine art and specie market in Germany with the appointment of Ulrike Janvier as senior underwriter.

In her new role Ulrike will be based in LSM’s office in Cologne.

She will report to both David Saillen, head of fine art and specie for Continental Europe and Wolfgang Weis, country manager for Germany.

Ulrike will develop new business and bespoke solutions for a wide range of clients in Germany.

Ulrike boasts over 23 years’ experience in the insurance sector as an underwriter.

She joins the company from AXA Art where she was senior underwriter. Before this she worked for an auction house and a gallery.

LSM launched fine art and specie in the Netherlands in April 2017 and in France in March 2018.

Commenting on the appointment, Kadidja Sinz, LSM’s head of Europe said: “With this key appointment we are very happy to be in a position to best serve the German brokers and clients for their growing needs for expert Fine Art and Specie coverages. We have seen tremendous interest for our specialist solutions and have been building a team of recognised professionals led by David in Europe and part of our European Strategy.”

Marsh creates new cyber suite for BI risks

Marsh has launched a suite of new and enhanced risk analytics and insurance solutions to address the increasing threat of business interruption (BI) from cyber-attacks.

In response to high-profile cyber events such as the WannaCry and NotPetya attacks, demand for BI solutions has grown, which highlighted the potential for emerging cyber threats to cause disruption and economic losses.

The new cyber BI suite will employ proprietary insurance wording and risk assessment analytics to help clients better quantify and mitigate cyber risks that could impact their operations, disrupt supply chains, or cause financial and physical damage.

The suite will aim to provide organisations with critical insight into their cyber exposures and inform their decision-making by evaluating risk mitigation efforts, setting insurance limits, and providing benchmarking capabilities and BI loss modelling.

Leader of Marsh’s U.S. cyber practice, Thomas Reagan said: “Despite years of investment in cybersecurity technology, cyber risk continues to be one of the top concerns for global business leaders.

“Recent events such as the NotPetya malware demonstrate that business interruption risk – and the associated potential for economic loss – is a different order of magnitude than what has come before; and the risk is still growing.

“Existing assessment tools and insurance solutions have not kept pace with fast-evolving nature of cyber risk, particularly the critical issue of business interruption risk.

“With the launch of our integrated suite of new and enhanced cyber BI solutions, Marsh is responding to our clients’ request for tailored, next generation, and practical tools to help them measure and manage cyber business interruption risk.”