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EC News (16 April 2020)

April 16, 2020

Round-up of the weekly news and developments from the global (re)insurance market with stories from Asta, MS Amlin Insurance SE, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions and more.

Asta appoints CRO & new board member

Asta, a third-party managing agent at Lloyd’s, has announced the appointment of Karen Green to the board of Asta Managing Agency and the promotion of Neil Griffiths to chief risk officer.

Green will take up the position as an independent non-executive director and chair of the risk committee.

Green brings a wealth of experience to Asta and is currently a non-executive director at Admiral Insurance Group and Phoenix Group and she also sits on the Council of Lloyd’s.

Meanwhile, Griffiths was formerly head of regulatory operations with responsibility for compliance and regulatory liaison.

He replaces Clare Barley who will assume a new role on the board later this year.

Julian Tighe, CEO of Asta said: “We are pleased to have Karen join the board. With over 30 years of financial services experience and specifically, 20 years in the insurance industry, she has a deep insight into Lloyd’s and the international market. She will be an invaluable addition to Asta.”

“We are also excited about Neil’s appointment; he is a fantastic addition to the board. These appointments contribute to Asta strengthening its position as the leading third-party managing agent at Lloyd’s.”

MS Amlin Insurance SE announces new CEO & CRO

MS Amlin Insurance Societas Europaea (MS AISE) has appointed Ludovic Sénécaut as chief executive officer and Rogier Peters as chief risk officer (CRO) as well as a series of board and management committee appointments.

Sénécaut replaces interim CEO Rudy Benmeridja who returns to his role of chief underwriting officer for P&C Europe and Country Manager for Belgium.

He brings a wealth of leadership and industry experience, having spent fifteen years in Euler Hermes Group and has held a number of senior positions such as group COO, CEO Northern and Eastern Europe.

Peters replaces current CRO Martyn Rodden, who will transition to a new role as deputy CEO of MS AISE’s sister company MS AUL, operating at Lloyd’s.

He is a qualified actuary who joins from Ageas UK where he served as CRO as well as several senior risk positions in the insurance sector internationally and across Ageas Group.

Additionally, Ms Amlin has appointed Robert Dickie and Monika Sebold-Bender as non-executive directors to the MS AISE Board.

Peer van Harten, chairman, MS AISE said: “I am delighted to announce a series of strong appointments to MS AISE’s Board and Management Committee that will significantly strengthen MS AISE’s business. As our new CEO, Ludovic’s experience, expertise and strong leadership track-record will be key to our growth and success in Europe, while Rogier’s strong technical expertise and industry and leadership experience will be integral to executing the business’s strategy. I am looking forward to working closely with them both and the new highly experienced MS AISE Non-Executive Board members.

“I would like to thank Rudy and Martyn for their contributions as interim CEO and CRO respectively. Their dedication and commitment to the business has been integral during this period and I am confident they will continue to excel as they take on other responsibilities within the business.”

Swiss Re Corporate Solutions hires Delavy as head of distribution management, EMEA

Swiss Re Corporate Solutions has appointed Claudine Delavy as head of distribution management, Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA), effective 1 May 2020.

In her new role, she will be responsible for advancing the company’s distribution strategy, representing all Swiss Re Corporate Solutions’ products and solutions to commercial insurance brokers and maintaining strong relationships with key partners. She will relocate from London to Zurich.

Delavy has more than 17 years’ professional experience and had multiple senior roles in the insurance and banking sector. She previously served as head of risk analytics sales with a global broking house and prior to that worked at Swiss Re as a senior structurer for reinsurance solutions.

Fred Kleiterp, CEO of Europe, Middle East & Africa, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, said: "I am delighted that Claudine will lead our Distribution Management efforts in EMEA. Her industry knowledge will help us strengthen relationships with broking partners through the region to the benefit of our mutual customers. Under her leadership, we will advance our distribution strategy and maximise synergies with our regional and national broker partners together with our local teams."

Ed appoints Niraj Perera as head of transactional risk

Global reinsurance, wholesale and specialty broker Ed has announced the appointment of Niraj Perera as head of transactional risk in its professional and executive risk team.

In his new role, Perera will focus on providing customised insurance solutions in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) transactions including warranting & indemnity, tax liability and contingent liability.

He brings more than 20 years’ insurance industry experience and joins the business from Arthur J. Gallagher. He has also held previous roles with Willis and Marsh.

Paul Richards, managing director of Professional & Executive Risk at Ed said: "Our Professional & Executive Risk team has successfully grown over the last three years by retaining and hiring the best talent and expertise to provide our clients with the specialty solutions they need.  Niraj’s appointment as Head of our Transactional Risk team, together with the other professionals we are recruiting, ensures that clients, principally in the private equity and legal sectors will benefit from our expertise in delivering these insurance solutions."

Bob Reichenfeld joins as executive director for THB Europe

Specialist (re)insurance broker THB has appointed Bob Reichenfeld as executive director for THB Europe, effective 1 July 2020.

Based in the Netherlands, Amstelveen, Reichenfeld will be responsible for leading THB’s treaty offering, working together with the facultative team to service the growing client base. He will report to Ricardo Borges, managing director of THB Europe.

Reichenfeld brings a wealth of experience within the Dutch and European reinsurance markets and joins the business from Aon Reinsurance Solutions Netherlands, where he served for 14 years, most recently as chief executive officer since 2006. Prior to this, he was at Delta Group for 16 years in multiple non-life and life reinsurance roles and spent the last six years as managing director, group reinsurance.

Borges said: “THB Europe sees plenty of opportunity to grow in the treaty market. Last year we recruited Zamira Thurnim to further develop our treaty book. Bob will have an overarching role and Bob’s experience and networks will add significant resources, experience and knowledge to our treaty team. His hire is a clear indication of THB’s ability to attract the very best and experienced professionals in the market. Although the world is still reeling from the effects of Covid-19 I am proud that THB is still able to make plans for the future so it is a great pleasure indeed to welcome Bob to THB to help drive our future business.”

Reichenfeld added: “I'm very excited and energised about my new position and I am confident that in this consolidating marketplace there is room and demand for THB Treaty. The treaty market presents significant opportunities for brokers that are able to add value for their clients. I embrace the Company's long-term ambition and highly value their entrepreneurial drive to make a difference. I can't wait to start and join the team.”

Liberty Specialty Markets expands its marine team with two appointments

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM), part of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, has promoted Rachel Watkinson to head of underwriting, Marine Transportation and Logistics and Alex Becker joins the division as underwriting manager, both effective immediately.

In her new role, Watkinson will be responsible for managing four classes of business: Marine Hull, Marine Cargo, Marine Liability and Marine War and will report to Michael Burle, head of marine at Liberty Specialty Markets.

Prior to the promotion, she was a senior actuary at LSM responsible for Marine, Aviation, Property and Energy.

Becker joins the firm from MS Amlin, where he was senior underwriter, Marine Hull & War. During his time there he worked in Singapore and was regional marine manager in Dubai. He will be responsible for leading the Hull account and report to Watkinson.

Burle, head of marine at Liberty Specialty Markets said: “I’m delighted that Rachel accepted her well-deserved promotion and that Alex has joined our Marine team.  In addition to driving the four classes of business, Rachel will be responsible for developing the talent we have in our growing underwriting team.  Alex will be responsible for promoting the class of business in the London market, raising its profile and managing a portfolio of blue and brown water vessels and fleets. These new roles give us the opportunity to shape our future through enhanced risk selection and leadership while delivering first class service to clients.”

Swiss Re names new chief data officer

Global reinsurer Swiss Re has announced the appointment of Ian Haycock to the newly created position of chief data officer, effective 1 May 2020.

In his new role Haycock will help to further develop Swiss Re’s digital strategy along with Youngran Kim who started as the group chief technology officer this month.

He has more than 32 years’ experience in technology, analytics and operations, including 26 years within financial services.

He joined Swiss Re in 2003 as head of technology for Capital Management & Advisory, later taking on the role of head enabling program asset management, where he was responsible for rebuilding the asset management platform following the financial crisis.

He held this role from 2008 to 2012, when he was appointed to the role of chief operating officer for Asset Management.

Anette Bronder, Swiss Re’s group chief operations officer, said: “Data-based insights are key in facilitating good decision making, especially in today’s everchanging environment.

“In this new role, Ian will be refining our data strategy, data governance and data structure with the aim of further strengthening our footprint as a tech-enabled risk knowledge company. Ian will also be responsible for the enabling of new data driven business models and digital solutions.”

Aston Lark appoints Jim Stevenson as associate director & head of new office

Chartered insurance broker Aston Lark has named Jim Stevenson as associate director and head of their new Cheltenham office, effective 6 April 2020.

Stevenson brings more than 30 years of commercial insurance, risk management experience and leadership to Aston Lark. He spent 19 years with Clarke Roxburgh, Jelf and Marsh Commercial where he was regional director in the South Midlands and South Wales leading offices in Worcester, Cheltenham, Bath, Swindon, Cardiff and Swansea.

He previously spent 12 years with Commercial Union, CGU, Norwich Union and Aviva.

In his new role he will focus on broadening his network of relationships to enhance and promote Aston Lark’s facilities, services and schemes to clients and recruit talent into the new Cheltenham office.

The Cheltenham office will cover the three counties of Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Worcestershire and further afield across the Midlands and South West.

Peter Blanc, group CEO Aston Lark, said: “Aston Lark is first and foremost about looking after clients. Jim clearly shares our passion for customer service and, with his wealth of experience and depth of relationships, I’m looking forward to seeing our new Cheltenham office go from strength to strength. We plan to carry on recruiting and growing organically across the country and welcome discussions with like-minded individuals. I wish Jim all the very best as he builds a new office from scratch as part of the Aston Lark family”.

Stevenson added: “I had a great opportunity to reflect and consider my next role carefully. Aston Lark has had an exceptional trajectory since its merger, with integrity and customers at the core of its strategy. The recent investment by Goldman Sachs continues to drive growth and I look forward to working with Peter and the Aston Lark team to introduce their insurance and employee benefits proposition into this greenfield region for the group.”

“Increasingly in this current climate, businesses focused on sustainable growth must surround themselves with advisers who support all their operations, supply chain and people. Aston Lark will adapt and evolve with a ceaseless focus on good customer outcomes and agility to become the broker of choice for customers, insurers, employees, affiliates and other brokers that might consider Aston Lark as the ideal home for their business when the time is right.”