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US General Insurance Newsletter Friday 5th August 2022

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Swiss Re has published its financial results for the first half of 2022 – and while the numbers are positive, they’re generally much lower than those in the corresponding period a year ago. Swiss Re attributed the plunge in consolidated net income to significantly lower investment results and to the $283 million in reserves established in the first quarter for the war in Ukraine. The reserves were not increased in Q2 – a period in which Swiss Re posted a net income worth $405 million.

The international speciality Insurer Brit Limited (Brit) has revealed its interim results for the six months ended June 30, 2022, a period that saw strong underwriting results for the group. In H1 2022, Brit saw its GWP rise to $1,990.5 million, up 35.9% from H1 2021’s $1,464.4 million. Its risk adjusted premium rates increased 12.1%, compared to 10.2% in the same period last year, and the group highlighted that it has seen 45.2% premium rate increases since January 01, 2018.

Arch Capital Group Ltd. reported second-quarter net income of $394.16 million, down 40.622% from the same period last year. Net premiums written grew 20.7% to $2.68 billion, and Arch’s second-quarter combined ratio improved to 77.1% from 79.8% in second-quarter 2021, the company said in its earnings statement.

Willis Towers Watson PLC reported its second-quarter organic revenue growth of 3% as its top Executive said it still expects to report mid-single-digit growth for the whole of 2022 despite the uncertain economic outlook. Willis reported second-quarter revenue of $2.03 billion, down 3% from $2.09 billion in the prior-year period. Excluding a 4% foreign currency headwind, revenue increased 1%.

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. reported $2.01 billion in total revenue for the second quarter, a 26.2% increase over the comparable quarter a year ago. The Broker reported a 23.3% increase in net income for the quarter, to $422 million.

Chubb Ltd. reported second-quarter net income of $1.22 billion, down 46.3% from $2.27 billion in the year-earlier period. The Insurer said in its earnings release after Tuesday’s market close that net income in the quarter was hit by realized after-tax losses of $565 million, “principally due to the mark-to-market impact on private and public equities and from sales in fixed income.”

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulations (OIR) is setting up a temporary reinsurance arrangement through Citizens Property Insurance Corp. The arrangement is being established to mitigate disruptions from potential Demotech rating downgrades, which could make impacted insurance companies fall short of rating requirements set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Counterpart launched its Excess insurance product for small businesses. Backed by Aspen, the Excess policy is another offering to support small businesses in a time of heightened litigation.

Corvus Insurance partnered with SiriusPoint Ltd., the global Specialty Insurer and reinsurer, and R&Q Accredited, the leading program management solution provider. The enhanced program, with R&Q Accredited continuing as the fronting Insurer, follows an initial investment and multi-year underwriting capacity partnership announced in September, 2021.

Duck Creek Technologies partnered with OpenText. Through this partnership, Duck Creek customers can now connect to OpenText Exstream via the Duck Creek Content Exchange, allowing Duck Creek users to leverage on-demand, personalized documents and communications developed with the full capability set of OpenText Exstream. and the provider of the SaaS-based, process-driven litigation management platform, ClaimDeck, announced a newly formed partnership. According to the Insurance Litigation Report 2022 by Lex Machina Inc., insurance lawsuit frequency increased approximately 47% over the last five years. Litigation challenges Insurers and claims organizations in an environment where it is already difficult to organically achieve profitability.

Virtus LLC partnered with Kemmons Wilson Insurance Group LLC, a Memphis-based agency focused on the Hotel, Hospitality and Lodging sector. The addition of KWIG will supplement the existing industry specialization strategy Virtus has established in the Real Estate, Private Equity, Construction and Restaurant sectors.

Pathpoint collaborated with insurance provider Markel. The collaboration will expand Pathpoint’s ability to help agents and Brokers quickly and efficiently quote and bind E&S business with A-rated carriers.

Openly launched Openly Insurance Company, an insurance carrier licensed in 17 states. Only weeks after announcing its $75M Series C funding round, Openly continues to expand its presence in the insurance industry and offer its premium, transparent and comprehensive coverage options to more agents and homeowners.

NFP announced it will open a new corporate office in downtown Toronto. NFP has signed a 10-year lease for 13,000 SF in First Canadian Place, the state-of-the-art Class A office complex located in Toronto’s financial district. This long-term commitment reflects the company’s growth in Canada over the last three years, where revenue has expanded by 110%, and its focus on continuing the positive momentum.

Smart Communications ranked as the Leader with the highest score in the 2022 Aspire Leaderboard for Vendor Hosted SaaS Customer Communications Management. In addition to being named a Leader in this category, the company was also positioned as a Leader in both the Aspire Leaderboard for AnyPrem CCM Software and Communications Experience Platform categories.

In a move that would impact millions of Florida policyholders, rating agency Demotech, Inc. has notified approximately 17 property insurance companies in the state that their financial stability ratings are at risk of being downgraded, according to an email from Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaierto Demotech President Joseph Petrelli.

A Pennsylvania mortgage company owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. has reached a $24.4 million settlement to resolve U.S. government charges that it intentionally discriminated against Black and Hispanic families in the Philadelphia area.

AbbVie Inc.’s unit Allergan has reached an agreement to pay over $2 billion to resolve thousands of lawsuits related to the marketing of its opioid painkiller. The deal would settle more than 3,000 lawsuits filed by state and local governments, but complete terms of the settlement are still being chalked out, according to the report. Thousands of lawsuits have been filed against drugmakers, distributors and pharmacies over the U.S. opioid crisis.

London-based digital manufacturing marketplace Geomiq has raised $8.5 million in a Series A funding round led by AXA Venture Partners (AVP) alongside TechNexus Venture Collaborative and existing investors Samaipata and Fuel Ventures.

The Hanover announced the launch of its Hanover i-on Sensor Program, which offers a set of technology-based services to help business and organization owners prevent workplace injuries, property damage, theft, and other losses offered through strategic partnerships. The IoT technology solutions enable business leaders to monitor facilities, property, and employee safety to proactively manage risk.

Property management platform Latchel has raised $16.7 million in Series A funding led by F-Prime Capital, with participation from RiverPark Ventures and existing investors, MetaProp, Bain Capital Ventures, 1984 Ventures, and Hack VC.

Pogo, a NY-based startup looking to help consumers monetize their data, has raised $14.8 million in funding – a $12.3 million seed round and a previously unannounced $2.5 million pre-seed round. Some of the backers include Josh Buckley, Slow Ventures, Village Global, MrBeast’s Night Ventures, as well as 100+ top founders, operators and creators.

All-inclusive electric car subscription service Onto has closed a $60 million Series C funding round led by Legal & General. The round will enable the business to consolidate leadership in the UK and expand into Europe, starting with Germany.

According to the press release, AFR Insurance will use Verisk’s Property claims-handling ecosystem to help rapidly assign, inspect and settle Property and Contents claims; monitor and analyze company performance, and get valuable insight on severe weather events.

Brown & Brown hosted its Q2 2022 earnings call on July 26th. Some of the highlights include: reported $840 million in total revenue for the second quarter (a growth of 15.5%), completed 8 acquisitions (including, Global Risk Partners, Orchid Insurance, and BdB) and the largest challenges continue to be, the ability to hire and inflation.

According to Swiss Re Institute’s latest sigma study, there will be a rise in insurance demand that could break premium records in 2022. This expected rapid growth reflects rising risk awareness in the wake of the pandemic and continued strong rate hardening in insurance Commercial Lines. The Insurer estimates that global non-life premiums will grow by 3.3% in 2021, 3.7% in 2022 and 3.3% in 2023.

P/C Insurers will enjoy steady underwriting profits and earnings in the face of headwinds, according to Fitch Ratings. The headwinds include higher inflation and a likely reduction in contributions from investment gains. These analysts predict a 97 combined ratio. However, if higher inflation persists, profitability and reserve strength would be expected to weaken in longer-tail segments, including workers’ compensation and other liabilities.

Insurance Agency Woodruff Sawyer detects a “noticeable shift in the wind in favor of insurance buyers” in 2022. Woodruff Sawyer warns that “Insurers’ optimism around continued rate increases may be wishful thinking,” noting that a second quarter survey by CIAB reported that average Commercial Lines rate increases in the quarter were 8.3%, down from 10.0% in Q1 2021.

AM Best revised its outlook for the workers’ compensation segment from negative to stable for 2022. This action reflects a number of factors, among them the “unexpectedly muted impacted of the COVID-19 pandemic” and solid risk-adjusted capitalization, redundant loss position and favorable combined ratios.

Clyde & Co.’s Vikram Sidhu writes that M&A deals involving Insurtechs “will accelerate to reach new levels” in 2022. This will include deals in which Insurtechs are the targets of larger existing players.

Fitch Ratings notes that the Cyber insurance market saw sizable rate increases and tighter terms and conditions in 2021, as some larger writers of Cyber insurance reported deteriorating loss experience. Favourable pricing momentum is expected to continue in 2022, according to a survey by The Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers that indicated rising Cyber renewal premium rates over the last 18 months, including a 25% increase in the second quarter of 2021. However, continued unfavourable claims experience points to higher Cyber loss ratios in 2021. Earned premium growth from recent pricing actions should help stabilize results for 2022.

Trean Insurance Group, a provider of products and services to the Specialty insurance market, and Beat Capital Partners America, a long-duration investor specializing in the insurance industry, have announced a partnership in the surplus lines insurance market.

Ally Financial hosted its Q2 2022 earnings call on July 19th. Some of the highlights include: reported a second-quarter net income of $482 million and within auto, consumer originations of $13.3 billion represented Ally’s highest quarterly flows since 2006 and originated yields expanded 75 basis points quarter over quarter to 7.8%.

Financial results have come in from Bermuda, the base of global Insurers Everest Re Group and Arch Capital Group. In the three-month span ended June 30, Arch’s insurance segment enjoyed a 98% increase in underwriting income, while the reinsurance operations posted a 45% rise. Consolidated underwriting income for the company stood at $535.4 million. Meanwhile, Everest President and Chief Executive Juan C. Andrade commented: “Everest’s solid second quarter results reflect the successful execution of our strategy with strong momentum across our key performance objectives. Our focus on underwriting profitability and operational efficiency, supported by our investment portfolio delivered $386 million in net operating income and a 15.3% operating ROE (return on equity)."

Natalie Sherod, a Risk Advisor at Cavignac, has been named 2022 Woman of the Year for the Southern California-Hawaii Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) chapter. LLS is the world’s largest voluntary health organization dedicated to fighting blood cancer.

Mergers & Acquisitions

J.S. Held acquired Kodsi Forensic Engineering, a forensic engineering firm based in Ontario that specializes in accident reconstruction services. This acquisition supports the expansion of J.S. Held’s Accident Reconstruction Practice and the firm’s strategic growth throughout Canada.

Liberty Mutual Insurance announced that it has completed its acquisition of AmGeneral Insurance Berhad – an insurance company based in Malaysia. The transaction closed following the receipt of regulatory approval in Malaysia, and after Liberty Mutual signed a purchase and sale agreement with AmBank Group.

Movers & Shakers

USAA has announced the appointment of Randy Termeer as President of Property and Casualty insurance. Termeer joined USAA in 2017 as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Auto insurance. Most recently, he led the company’s acquisition of Noblr and launched small business insurance and the SafePilot program.

Resilience announced five new appointments in July. Jack Jenner as International Head of Distribution and Strategy, Rehan Hussain as Head of Underwriting, Tom Ryan as Lead Underwriter, Tom Egglestone as International Claims Leader and Simon West as Cyber Advisory Lead.

California Casualty Management Company appointed Mark D. Pitchford as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. He served as Head of the Insurance Practice at Afiniti, an applied artificial intelligence provider.

Novidea appointed Peter Gregory as Sales Manager. He served at SSP Worldwide and held various roles in sales and marketing, before becoming the firm’s Director of Broking.

Powers Insurance & Risk Management announced two new appointments. Mark Sherman as Personal Lines Practice Leader and Deanna Sherman as Account Manager.

Crum & Forster appointed Drew M. Kovalsky as Vice President Credit Underwriter. He served as Vice President & Credit Analyst at Assured Guaranty.

Specialty Lines Insurer HDI Global Specialty SE (HDI) has appointed John Button as its new Head of Global Distribution and Business Development, effective immediately. Button has spent eight years at HDI Global SE and three years as the Strategic Relationship Manager at HDI Global Specialty.

AXA XL Insurance, the Property/Casualty insurance business of France’s Axa SA, has named former Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. Executive Matthew Waters to the new role of Head of U.S. middle market. At Liberty Mutual, Mr. Waters was most recently Executive Vice President, General Manager for Liberty’s middle market business.

Acrisure Re has hired former Guy Carpenter & Co. LLC Broker Chuck Furlong as a Senior Vice President. Most recently, he was Head of U.S. Casualty Reinsurance at Guy Carpenter. Previously, he was a Managing Director at JLT Re North America, which Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc., Guy Carpenter’s parent company, bought in 2019. appointed Jerico Vinsonhaler as Head of Underwriting. He led underwriting strategy at Markel.

Nationwide appointed Chris Leisz as the Head of Alternative Ventures for the company’s Excess & Surplus/Specialty team. He served at Risk Placement Services as President. Dawn Brost has joined as Senior Vice President of the E&S Brokerage Excess and Casualty team. She served at Hiscox Insurance Company as the Head of Casualty.

Liberty Company Insurance Brokers announced two new Strategic Partnership Advisors, Philip Knight and Michelle Montoya. Michael Lopez has also joined the firm’s Santa Rosa office as Managing Partner. He had more than 20 years of leadership experience in providing strategic risk management, insurance and corporate culture leadership solutions for top-tier, multi-location and high-growth companies.

Hub International Limited appointed Andy Prill as the Regional President of the newly created Mountain Northwest Region. He previously served as President and CEO of HUB.

Munich Re Specialty Insurance (MRSI) has named Sean O’Connell as Head of Excess & Surplus (E&S) Primary Casualty. He previously served as Vice President at Westchester Casualty.

NFP made a number of appointments in July, with Alana Lapierre as Senior Vice President, Human Resources, in Canada. She served at CCM Hockey as Global Vice President, People and Culture, and Chief Human Resources Officer. Seth Michaelson as Vice President of the Energy practice within NFP’s Specialty business. He served as Managing Director at Catto & Catto. And, James Debenport as Vice President, Energy and Marine, to the Energy practice within NFP’s Specialty business. He served as Vice President of a boutique wholesale brokerage firm specializing in the Energy Casualty business.

Brush Country Claims appointed Denis Connolly as its Chief Revenue Officer to expand new business opportunities and drive company growth. He worked as VP of sales and business development for Claimatic Intelligent Claims Management and PLNAR.

Verisk announced two appointments, Elizabeth Mann joined as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. She served at S&P Global as Chief Financial Officer and Tim Rayner joined as President of the company’s Specialty Business Solutions group. He previously served as Chief Experience Officer at Verisk Specialty Business Solutions.

Sentry Insurance announced that Heather Schenker joined the company as Head of Specialty. She served as Vice President of underwriting at Nationwide Insurance.

Kinetic appointed Troy Fenderson as Regional Vice President of insurance distribution. He has over 30 years of experience in the workers’ compensation insurance marketplace.

Corvus Insurance promoted James Berry to Chief Claims Officer. He previously served as Claims Team Lead at Corvus Insurance.

Prodigy Care Services announced two new appointments in July. Paul Norkett as Chief Operating Officer and Kevin Lanphier as Chief Sales Officer.

Allcat Claims Service promoted Sid Carr to Chief Executive Officer. He served as Vice President, North Highland, and a Principal at A.T. Kearney.

Gallagher Bassett announced two new appointments, Greg Perruzzi as Senior Vice President – Construction Vertical Leader and Joe Berrios asManaging Director - Carrier Practice.

DOXA Insurance Holdings appointed Michael Robbins as Regional Sales Director, headquartered in Dallas. He served as the Business Relationship Manager at Mountain States Insurance Group.

Integrity Marketing Group, LLC announced Tom Dempsey joined its Executive team as Chief Distribution Officer. He served as Head of Transamerica financial network, and President and CEO of World Financial Group.

BMS announced five new appointments in July. Dominic Morrison as Director, Toby Hooker as Broker, Cathy Lai as Business Development Lead, Sagar Mehta as Associate Director and Ian Gormley as U.K. CEO.

Signal Restoration Services announced Barry Zollman joined as Executive Vice President, Business Development. He served as Vice President of Logistics at Bingham Services Inc.

Valley Insurance Agency Alliance announced two new appointments, Jessica Berry as Data Analyst and Jessica Johnson as Foundation Specialist.

MarshBerry appointed Michael Walls as Senior Vice President of Content Strategy. He served as Vice President of Digital Marketing & Content for life and annuity provider Global Atlantic Financial Group.

Lloyd’s appointed Bertrand Heugues as Chief Underwriting Officer. He served as a Commercial Lines Underwriter at Axa.

Canopius Group appointed Serena Lee as its General Council and Chief Risk Officer. She served as Vice President, Senior Council – Corporate and Litigation at Ambridge Partners, LLC.

Everest Reinsurance announced that Joe Stuhl joined as Senior Vice President of Global Distribution. He served as an Executive Vice President and Broker Executive at Munich Re U.S.

IMA Select announced that Sandy Harvath joined as its President. She served as Construction Account Manager at IMA.

WTW appointed Sudhir Modhvadia as Head of Structured Risk. He served at RenaissanceRe as Experienced Property Underwriter.

Liberty Company Insurance Brokers announced that John Bella joined as Producer. He worked with various property management companies in the Private Real Estate industry.

Convex Group Limited announced that Paul Brand joined as group CEO.

Everest Insurance announced three new appointments in July, Chris Curtin as Head of U.S. Property, Patrick Hagerty as Vice President, Division Underwriting Officer and Maria Grace as Chief Underwriting Officer.

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from multiple General Insurance Media sources and individual company press releases.