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EC News (28 May 2020)

May 28, 2020

Round-up of the weekly news and developments from the global (re)insurance market with stories from Partner Re, Willis Towers Watson, BMS Group and more.

Partner Re makes key changes to its non-life structure and leadership team

Bermuda-based reinsurer PartnerRe has announced changes to the responsibilities of executive leadership within Specialty Lines and has created the new role of chief executive officer for Global Cat.

Greg Haft will assume the role of CEO Global Cat, effective 1 June 2020. This is a newly created unit which will see him bring together the firm’s centrally managed property cat portfolio and the group cat technical functions of research, modeling and portfolio management.

Haft is currently CEO of Specialty Lines and a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

Philippe Meyenhofer will replace Haft as CEO of Specialty Lines. He is currently CEO P&C EMEA and a member of the Executive Leadership Team. Meyenhofer joined the company in 2010 and held several leadership positions prior to his current role, most recently as Head of P&C Europe from July 2016 to April 2019.

Christian Mitterer, currently head of specialty casualty in P&C EMEA, will assume the role of head of P&C EMEA, reporting to Emmanuel Clarke.

Mitterer has been leading PartnerRe’s Specialty Casualty unit within P&C EMEA since 2016.

Nick Hughes, head of global cat, will report to Haft and be responsible for an expanded Cat portfolio, including US Cat as well as specific, large monoline relationships.

Joe Hooks, head of the North America Cat team, will report to Hughes.

With these changes, the composition of the Company’s Executive Leadership Team remains the same.

Clarke commented: “Specialty Lines and Global Cat are critical to our performance and success as a global diversified reinsurer, with unique leadership requirements. Going forward, as markets improve, we need to ensure the Specialty book can deliver sustainable profitability and we can fully leverage our expertise and relationships to grow profitably in this diverse segment. Philippe has a proven track record of leading technical, complex businesses and has the skills needed to lead this unit.”

“At the same time, the newly created Global Cat unit will enhance our ability to deploy our Cat capacity with a more centralized steering of our portfolio management. Greg’s deep knowledge of the catastrophe business, his franchise in the Cat market and his experience in leading our Cat unit make him the right choice to help advance our strategy and performance.”

Adding: “I am pleased we can fill these roles with our existing talent and leadership. As a result, this allows us to act now, ensuring we are well positioned as we respond to a fast-improving market, with leaders who are well known to the organization and our business partners.”

WTW appoints Johan Forsgård as Head of Nordics

Global (re)insurance broker Willis Towers Watson (WTW) has announced the appointment of Johan Forsgård as leader of its new Nordics region structure.

In his new role as head of Nordics, he will be responsible of the newly formed regions consisting of Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway.

Forsgård was previously head of Sweden and Finland at WTW, having held that position since 2016. He joined the company in 2005 and has worked in a range of leadership positions, becoming Head of Sweden in 2012.

Anne Pullum, head of Western Europe at WTW said: “Johan is a dynamic and committed leader, and this new role enables him to build on his many successes in the region. We have established a strong reputation in the Nordics, and clients there have shown a growing appetite for our wide range of global solutions.”

Forsgård commented: “I am honoured to be given the chance to lead the Nordic region, where we have very strong businesses, and excellent people and leaders. I know our Nordics businesses well from my long career with the company, and I have a strong background in our corporate risk and broking business.

Adding: “We are well positioned to accelerate our existing strategy and deliver value to our clients in the shape of a more integrated Nordic team.”

BMS expands energy team with three senior hires

Independent specialist (re)insurance broker BMS Group has announced a trio of appointments including Alison Schwab, Russell Williams and Robert Thomas to the energy division.

Schwab and Williams will join alongside Thomas, following completion of their current contractual obligations in July and November, respectively. They will report to James Chicken, managing director of BMS Energy and Duncan Hayward, head of energy casualty.

Schwab brings over 20 years’ experience in the US and London insurance market and joins the firm from Marsh JLT Specialty, where she most recently served as a senior vice president. Prior that that, she held several senior roles at Alesco Risk Management Services in London as well as Wortham Insurance and Lockton Companies in the US between 2007 and 2019.

Thomas brings a specialist focus in the thermal power and renewable energy fields, areas he has focussed on throughout his career, which began at Price Forbes & Partners in 2008.

Williams will join the business in July and specialises in general casualty and energy liability within the Bermuda market. He has previously served as head of specialty at RK Harrison and prior to that, held the position as managing director at JLT Specialty Bermuda.

Chicken said: “We are determined to attract the best talent to BMS Energy to ensure we continue to excel for our clients in these challenging times and deliver a broad access to markets in London, Europe and Bermuda. People like Robbie, Russell and Alison, whose combinations of experience, specialist expertise and relationships, continue to strengthen our team’s offering for our retailers and Insureds. I am incredibly proud of our results so far but far more excited at what we can do from here, staying ahead of the changing needs of energy companies, with the skills, mentality and relationships to deliver outstanding results, in a challenging trading environment, across these sectors.”

Colin Bird joins EC3 Brokers in senior management role

London-based EC3 Brokers have appointed Colin Bird to work alongside senior management to focus on the growth of the company.

Bird, who joined on 1 May, will also oversee the newly created specialty casualty and cyber team.

He brings over three decades of industry experience and between 1995 to 2015, he was chairman and CEO of Besso Insurance. Bird stepped down as CEO in 2015 but retained his chairmanship until the business was sold to BGC in 2017, at which point Bird became a non-executive director.

Most recently, he was a non-executive chairman at Prospect Insurance Brokers.

Bird said: “I look forward to working alongside quality people to grow the specialty team and the business as a whole. I have a longstanding relationship with BP Marsh, as does EC3 Brokers, so that was an attractive opportunity for me. It’s encouraging to work with such good people under great leadership.”

Danny Driscoll, CEO, added: “We’re excited to have Colin on board. He is extremely talented and business minded. He has a proven long and successful history of growing businesses, so we look forward to working with him as we grow EC3 Brokers and strengthen our relationships with clients.”

Clear Insurance adds new CFO and operations director

Independent broker Clear Insurance Management has announced the appointment of Tim Money as chief financial officer and Nick Gallimore as group operations director.

Both Money and Gallimore will also be added to the boards of Clear Insurance Management, Morrisons Insurance Services and MPW Insurance Brokers.

Money joins from Hastings Direct where he held the position of finance director and brings extensive private equity and financial service experience to the role.

Meanwhile, Gallimore will be responsible for driving strategy for Clear Insurance’s IT, operations, compliance, and facilities teams while also covering corporate governance and risk. He brings 25 years of insurance industry experience joining from Tokio Millennium Re AG UK.

Howard Lickens, CEO, said: “Both Tim and Nick bring additional talent to our strong leadership team that will help drive the carefully managed growth of the business. They join at an exciting time in our history as we look to strengthen the business support functions, drive operational efficiency throughout and improve the experience of our clients.

“Whilst it’s inevitable that Covid-19 will change our business, we remain well positioned to deliver on our business ambitions and goals.

Starr Insurance names Jose Ribeiro as non-executive director

Starr Insurance companies announced the appointment of Jose Ribeiro as an independent non-executive director for Starr Europe Insurance and Starr Managing Agency.

Based in London Ribeiro brings over three decades of experience in the financial services industry serving in several leadership roles across the spectrum of insurance organisations.

He began his insurance career at AIG in 1986 where he spent eight years before moving to Munich Re. In 2002, he joined Wills Towers Watson as CEO for Latin America and the Caribbean. In 2007 he became director for international markets at Lloyd’s. From 2015 to 2019, Ribeiro was managing director and board member for Asia-Pacific at AM Best.

Jim Herbert, head of Starr’s UK and European operations, said: “We’re fortunate to have someone of Jose’s calibre join our boards. He brings a wealth of experience in client and broker relations around the world and extensive risk-management expertise.”