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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 10th May 2024

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Insurance News

Liberty Mutual Insurance (formally Liberty Mutual Holding Company and its subsidiaries, or LMHC collectively) has turned things around in the first quarter of 2024. Lifting the lid on Liberty Mutual’s financial results, President and Chief Executive Tim Sweeney noted: “For the first quarter, we reported net income attributable to LMHC of US$1.5 billion driven by strong core underwriting results and a US$663 million after-tax benefit from the gain on the sale of our GRM West Operations." (Terry Gangcuangco, 10/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Liberty Mutual Insurance bounces back in Q1 financials')

Broker Insights has introduced a new AI-powered (artificial intelligence) tool called Propensity Lens. Aimed at boosting the UK commercial insurance sector’s ability to forecast successful new business acquisitions, the tool is an addition to the Broker Insights Vision Decision Intelligence platform that is renowned for harnessing data from more than a third of the market to facilitate optimal matches between brokers and insurers. Propensity Lens leverages advanced AI techniques to analyse a comprehensive dataset and predict the transfer of policies between carriers as part of Vision’s capabilities. This functionality allows insurers to focus on prospects they are most likely to secure. (Terry Gangcuangco, 10/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Broker Insights launches Propensity Lens for insurers')

Brookfield Asset Management Ltd. (BAM), the parent of Brookfield Reinsurance, has announced a significant expansion in the asset management sector, alongside robust financial results for the first quarter of 2024. The company reported net income of $102 million and substantial growth across various investment strategies. (Insurance Business UK, 10/5/2024, 'Brookfield Asset Management reports strong Q1 growth')

Hamilton Insurance Group, the name behind Hamilton Re, has revealed its financial results for the first quarter of 2024. The company reported a net income of $157.2 million and maintained a streak of profitability in its underwriting operations, marking its sixth consecutive quarter of underwriting income. (Insurance Business UK, 10/5/2024, 'Hamilton posts net income as it eyes share buyback'

​Marsh, a global insurance broker and risk advisor, has announced the launch of MiCAssure, a proprietary insurance solution designed for crypto-asset service providers in the European Union (EU). The offering aims to help firms comply with the forthcoming Markets in Crypto-Assets Regulation (MiCA), which is set to take effect on December 30 this year. According to a news release, MiCA establishes a comprehensive regulatory framework for the crypto-assets market within the EU, focusing on legal certainty, consumer protection, and reducing regulatory fragmentation. It requires regulated firms authorised under MiCA to have prudential safeguards, either through their own funds or by maintaining an insurance policy, to cover specific risks. (Jonalyn Cueto, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Marsh launches new insurance solution for EU crypto-asset service providers')

IGI’s move into Lloyd’s underwriting room aligns with its goals of broadening distribution networks and elevating its brand within the competitive London insurance market. The company will engage in multiple business lines, utilising a rotating team of underwriters. Headquartered in Bermuda, the company will operate from Box 330A in the third gallery of Lloyd's iconic underwriting room at One Lime Street in London. Starting May 9, International General Insurance Holdings Ltd (IGI) will commence trading activities at Lloyd’s of London, marking a significant step in its global expansion strategy. (Insurance Business UK, 9/5/2024, 'IGI launches trading at Lloyd's of London')

WTW has announced substantial upgrades to its global CyXS facility. Initially launched in January 2023, the cyber facility now boasts new enhancements aimed at addressing the evolving complexities of cyber threats and meeting the growing demands of clients. Improvements to the CyXS facility include a significant increase in capacity – up from US$/€/£50 million to US$/€/£75 million, a 50% rise based on client input. Additionally, the number of Lloyd’s insurers participating in the facility expanded from seven to 14. (Terry Gangcuangco, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'WTW boosts global CyXS facility')

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM), the international commercial and specialty business of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group (LMIG), has launched a new digital trading solution Contractors All Risks (CAR). Developed in collaboration with Howden, the new digital trading solution will be joining the existing CAR digital trading solutions that the firm had built with WTW and another broker. As a result, LSM London’s CAR book is now under the support of its key broking partners’ digital capabilities. (Abigail Adriatico, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Liberty Specialty Markets launches new digital trading solution')

​Direct Line Insurance Group Plc (Direct Line Group or DLG), which is now led by an overhauled executive team, has issued its trading update for the first three months of the year. DLG’s ongoing operations exclude the brokered commercial business that was acquired by RSA Insurance last year. GWP and associated fees from the unit amounted to £155.1 million in Q1. “We have seen a positive start to 2024 trading, with double-digit gross written premium growth in our motor, home, and commercial businesses and overall growth for ongoing operations of 15%,” DLG Chief Executive Adam Winslow noted. (Terry Gangcuangco, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Direct Line Group reports "positive start" to 2024')

NMU, which is turning 42 this year, is now known as Munich Re Specialty. On its website, the UK-based specialty insurance solutions provider has this message to the market: “Our name has changed to Munich Re Specialty. Our stability, expertise, and partnership are now under one powerful, global brand – Munich Re Specialty. Pardon our dust while we update this site to reflect this change.” (Terry Gangcuangco, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'NMU becomes Munich Re Specialty')

​International General Insurance Holdings Ltd (IGI) has announced its financial performance for the first quarter of 2024. Gross written premiums reached $181.6 million, up 4.4% from $173.9 million in Q1 2023. Net premiums earned also saw growth, rising to $114.5 million from $105.1 million. The company reported a significant increase in underwriting income, which reached $52 million, a 30.7% increase over last year’s $39.8 million. (Roxanne Libatique, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'IGI reports strong Q1 2024 growth')

Munich Re has reported a strong start to 2024, with its Q1 net result climbing to €2,140 million, up from €1,271 million in the previous year. The performance was attributed to lower than average major-loss expenditures, robust investment returns, and solid operational results across all business divisions. The company’s insurance revenue from contracts issued increased to €15,061 million, up from €14,273 million, driven largely by organic growth in the reinsurance segment and at ERGO International. The total technical result also saw a rise, reaching €2,785 million compared to €1,809 million in the prior period, while the currency result improved significantly to €176 million, a reversal from a €145 million loss, primarily due to gains against the US dollar. (Kenneth Araullo, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Munich Re kicks off 2024 with strong Q1 results')

26North Reinsurance Holdings (26N Re) has announced the successful closure of a $4.9 billion reinsurance deal with Life Insurance Company of the Southwest (LSW), part of the National Life Group (NLG). This transaction increases 26North’s assets under management to an estimated $22 billion. Under this agreement, 26N Re, through its subsidiaries, will provide reinsurance for the portfolio of LSW’s multi-year guarantee and fixed index annuity products. Furthermore, 26N Re has committed to quota share reinsurance for new fixed annuities issued by LSW in the future. (Kenneth Araullo, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, '26North Re finalizes reinsurance transaction for life insurance portfolio')

RSA parent company Intact Financial Corporation has published its earnings report for the first quarter of 2024. Of the operating DPW, CA$3.25 billion came from Canada, CA$1.25 billion from the UK&I segment, and CA$613 million from the US. Meanwhile, the combined ratio in Canada stood at 90.7%, in UK&I 94.6%, and in the US 88.0%. (Terry Gangcuangco, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'RSA parent reports improved Q1 results')

​Applied Systems Europe has announced an expanded partnership with Bravo Networks to enhance support for client money management for brokers using the Applied Epic system. This collaboration, Applied Systems says, has led to major architectural enhancements in the broker management system, introducing new reporting functions and compliance assurances. These improvements aim to aid Bravo Networks in assisting brokers with their Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) compliance responsibilities, including the promotion of cost efficiency and scalability. (Kenneth Araullo, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Applied Systems, Bravo Networks expand partnership for client money management')

Marsh McLennan has announced that it has become the first organisation in the UK to receive the “Autism Confidence” accreditation from the charity Ambitious about Autism (AaA). This recognition comes after a comprehensive three-year initiative aimed at enhancing inclusivity in recruitment, HR policies, employee engagement, education, and the workplace environment to better accommodate neurodiverse staff. In 2021, Marsh McLennan committed to Ambitious about Autism's Employ Autism program, pledging to actively recruit autistic individuals. Since then, the company has provided 22 paid work experience opportunities for autistic youth throughout the UK, with half of these placements resulting in permanent employment. (Kenneth Araullo, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Marsh McLennan marks "Autism Confidence" milestone for inclusion and neurodiversity')

​Casper Specialty UK Limited, the specialist casualty-focused Managing General Agent (MGA), has announced the addition of two new capacity providers as it marks its second year of operations. Chaucer and TMK will join existing provider Argenta to support Casper as it continues to expand its scale and scope through its underwriting strategy. (Kenneth Araullo, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Casper announces new capacity partners in second year of trading')

CNA Financial Corporation is “off to an excellent start” this year, according to Chair and Chief Executive Dino E. Robusto. CNA’s P&C operations generated US$2.39 billion in net written premiums in Q1. Of this total, US$792 million came from specialty, US$1.34 billion from commercial, and US$260 million from international. (Terry Gangcuangco, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'CNA Financial Corporation improves Q1 net income')

Hiscox has completed the first tranche of its share buyback initiative. The first part of the programme, which involved the repurchase of 4,896,100 ordinary shares at 6.5 pence each, wrapped up on May 2 with a total expenditure of US$75 million, excluding additional costs. The buyback was conducted in partnership with Peel Hunt. Following the initial phase, Hiscox entered a new agreement with Citigroup Global Markets to launch the second tranche of the buyback. This stage is set to conclude by the end of the third quarter of 2024, with another US$75 million allocated for purchasing the shares and Citigroup serving as principal. (Terry Gangcuangco, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Hiscox completes first half of share buyback programme')

Mergers & Acquisitions

The Broker Investment Group (TBIG) has expanded its ownership interest in managing general agent Hathaway & Cope to 75% of the MGA. Hathaway & Cope, located in West Yorkshire, specialises in offering retail insurance brokers public and employers’ liability insurance, contractors all risk, and excess of loss insurance. The business has been trading since 1982 with £6 million in gross written premium. TBIG – whose MGA division includes Accelerate Underwriting, Insurety, and TBIG Residential Property – initially acquired a stake in Hathaway & Cope in October 2022.(Terry Gangcuangco, 10/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'TBIG ups stake in Hathaway & Cope')

The Ardonagh Group (“Ardonagh” or “the Group”), has announced it has entered into a Scheme Implementation Deed (“SID”) to acquire all of the issued ordinary shares in PSC Insurance Group Limited (ASX:PSI) (“PSC”) for A$6.19 in cash per PSC Share pursuant to a scheme of arrangement1. Ardonagh intends to merge PSC’s Australia and New Zealand operations with Envest Pty Ltd (“Envest”), acquired by the Group in February 2023, becoming one of Australia’s largest privately owned insurance distribution platforms, placing A$3.3 billion in gross written premium annually. (Ardonagh Group, 9/5/2024, youTalk Insurance, 'Ardonagh to buy Australian PSC Insurance Group in A$2.3 billion landmark deal')

​Greenwood Moreland, part of JMG Group, has acquired Hamilton Robertson Insurance Brokers (HRIB) for an undisclosed sum. HRIB, which includes specialist division C&A Mackie Insurance Brokers, is based out of Glasgow and London with a workforce of 25 colleagues. It adds £15 million in gross written premium (GWP) to Greenwood Moreland’s portfolio, bringing total GWP to more than £40 million and combined headcount to over 100 employees across seven locations. The existing management team at HRIB – owner Graeme Robertson and senior leaders Graeme Brown and Jack Dalton – will remain at the helm. They are set to drive substantial growth within trading divisions Hamilton Robertson Insurance Brokers, C&A Mackie Insurance Brokers, and HRIB London. (Terry Gangcuangco, 9/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Hamilton Robertson Insurance Brokers gets snapped up')

​Acrisure has announced the completion of two major acquisitions that are set to enhance its presence in southern England. These acquisitions include Financial and Credit Insurance Services Ltd (FinCred) and Global Broking Solutions (GBS), with Acrisure noting that both mark a significant expansion in the region managed by Sutton Winson, which is the firm’s largest UK acquisition to date. FinCred, headquartered in Sevenoaks, Kent, specialises in credit insurance brokerage and surety bonds. The acquisition is expected to augment Acrisure and Sutton Winson’s capabilities throughout the United Kingdom. In addition, Acrisure has acquired Global Broking Solutions, enhancing its client base across Kent and East Sussex. This acquisition complements the earlier purchase of FinCred, as Acrisure and Sutton Winson established robust office networks in London, East Sussex, and now Kent. (Kenneth Araullo, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Acrisure strengthens UK presence with double swoop')

Insurance broking powerhouse JMG Group has affirmed its commitment to strengthening its commercial insurance services and its footprint in the south through its acquisition of SIA Insurance. SIA, a Surrey-based insurance broker led by Directors Chris Browne and Colin Duxberry, was established in 1996 and has since acquired five companies. The team now comprises 10 staff who offer commercial, property and motor insurance services from its offices in Surbiton, Surrey. In a Press release, SIA noted selling to JMG Group is part of its succession plan and will provide the business with a solid platform for future growth. Under the terms of the deal, JMG Group will integrate SIA’s subsidiary, Evergreen Insurance Services. (Mia Wallace, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'JMG Group continues M&A spree')


​Fusion Specialty (Fusion), an Australia-headquartered MGA platform within Pop Group Holdings (POP), has announced new appointments to its London-based mergers and acquisitions (M&A) team. Alexander Mackay joins as Partner and Tom Hopkins as Associate. Their roles will focus on enhancing broker relationships and strengthening Fusion UK’s underwriting capacity. Mackay has extensive experience in M&A insurance within the London market, having spent five years working with leading insurers. In his previous roles, he managed broker relationships in London and international markets, which he aims to leverage in his new position. Hopkins, coming from a legal background, most recently worked with international law firm Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe in its venture capital division. (Roxanne Libatique, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Fusion Specialty boosts UK M&A team')

​BIBA recently announced key changes to its boards: Edward Castles of WTW is now Chair of the International and Wholesale Brokers’ Advisory Board (IWBAB) and has joined the main BIBA board, succeeding Ryan Bond of Marsh. Holly Shepherd of Shepherd Global is the new IWBAB Deputy Chair, and Jason Mills of Marsh Specialty UK is a new member. Karen Weir of Weir Insurance Brokers has taken over as Chair of the SME Brokers’ Advisory Board (SMEBAB) from Paul Dickson. Shona Robertson of H&R Insurance is now SMEBAB Deputy Chair and has joined the main board, alongside Katie Freemantle of FSB Insurance Services. Other appointments include Peter Blanc, Alistair Fraser, Julie Gibbons, John Warbuton, and Phil Williams to the Larger Brokers’ Advisory Board; Jo Stevens and Eddie Ferraro to the Insurance Brokers’ Standards Committee; and James Allotey to the Networks and MGA Advisory Board, with Catherine Bell as Deputy Chair. (Terry Gangcuangco, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'BIBA outlines board changes')

Specialty managing general agent GBN Risk Solutions (GBNRS), which was introduced by GBN Worldwide in February, has added Houssam Yehya to its leadership team in London as Director and Group Head of International. Yehya, who boasts over 15 years of experience in the (re)insurance industry, will spearhead the development and operations of GBNRS. (Terry Gangcuangco, 8/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'GBN Risk Solutions bolsters leadership with new director')

​Insurance provider Lancashire Holdings has appointed Group Chief Underwriting Officer Paul Gregory as an Executive Director on the company’s board. Gregory has been with the group since 2007, with his previous roles including CUO and Chief Executive of Lancashire Insurance Company (UK). Group Chief Underwriting Officer since 2014, Gregory has also served as Lancashire Capital Management CEO since 2021. Prior to joining Lancashire, Gregory worked at companies like AIG and Marsh. (Terry Gangcuangco, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Group CUO becomes board executive director at Lancashire')

Global brokerage network Brokerslink has added Alliant Retail Property & Casualty Executive Vice President and Managing Director Alexandra Littlejohn to its board of directors. With more than 36 years of experience in the insurance sector, including stints at Marsh and WTW, Littlejohn’s comprehensive knowledge and employment history strongly position her as a valuable asset to the board at Brokerslink. (Terry Gangcuangco, 7/5/2024, Insurance Business UK, 'Brokerslink names key addition to board')

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from Insurance Business UK and youTalk Insurance.