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General Insurance Newsletter Friday 17th January 2020

17 Jan 2020

MS Amlin has announced the launch of specialist equine MGA David Ashby Underwriting (DAU). The MGA was formed following the buyout of MS Amlin’s equine book of business and renewal rights by David Ashby.

Axa XL has completed the merger of Axa Corporate Solutions and Axa Art with XL Insurance Company SE (XLICSE). The merger, which was approved by the Central Bank of Ireland and the Irish High Court, was effective from 31 December 2019.

Arthur J. Gallagher has bought the remaining stake in Capsicum Reinsurance Brokers, increasing its ownership from 33% to 100%. Gallagher first announced that it was going to take full ownership of Capsicum Re in November last year. Capsicum Re was launched by Grahame Chilton and Rupert Swallow in December 2013 through a strategic partnership with Gallagher. Rupert Swallow, CEO of Capsicum Re, has stated that Gallagher’s deal to take full ownership of the business has fulfilled the objectives set by the company six years ago.

Edinburgh-based Bruce Stevenson has reported “record” turnover of £7.76m for the year ended 31 August 2019. The figure marks growth of 8.4% over the £7.16m total reported for 2018. Profit before tax at Bruce Stevenson grew 30.6% from £519,000 to £677,000.

Global Risk Partners (GRP) has bought Birrell Group, which comprises Kingsway Insurance Services and Bausor Hall Associates, for an undisclosed sum. Birrell Group, which is based in Lutterworth, Leicestershire, will keep its brand and become GRP’s hub in the Midlands.

Beazley is pulling out of a number of Marine lines in the UK including regional Cargo, regional Freight Liability and regional Commercial Hull. These parts of the business will be placed in run-off. It is believed that this accounts for 5% of Beazley’s Marine book. Brokers are not surprised by Beazley’s decision to place regional Marine lines in run-off and remain optimistic about their ability to find cover in the short-term.

MCL InsureTech, formerly MCL Insurance, has set up an office in Swords, Dublin as a separate entity to its Coleraine headquarters in Northern Ireland. MCL, which is the name behind online insurance brands Its4women, 25plus and Boxymo, said the move would create 40 jobs in Swords and represent an investment of £3m in the Irish economy.

Governor Software and Sicsic Advisory have teamed up to launch a live version of the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) handbook that enables firms to map, track and report regulatory compliance. The companies stated that the strategic partnership aims to help UK regulated insurance firms, including Brokers and Insurers, stay compliant in a constantly evolving regulatory environment.

Somerset Bridge Insurance Services has announced the sale of Business Choice Direct Insurance Services to Lloyd and Whyte Group for an undisclosed sum. Business Choice Direct, Somerset Bridge’s commercial insurance subsidiary, has turnover of more than £6m and profit before tax of around £1m. Its policy count stands at 26,000. The business was first established in 2013 and was carved out as a subsidiary company in 2016, with Somerset Bridge holding a 51% stake.

For Tom Dixon, Head of Technology at Hiscox UK, working with the technology sector has been a common thread linking each of his insurance roles to date. Discussing the recent update of Hiscox’s technology offering, Dixon highlighted how the company has been writing technology on a bespoke wording for 25 years and has always sought to provide market-leading solutions for the technology space. Part of the process of ensuring that you are offering the most up-to-date solutions, he said, is thinking about what the product is lacking, what can be added and what does the tech company want and need.

In further news...German MGA Getsafe has partnered with Hiscox for its UK launch. The firm offers digital contents insurance through its smartphone app and specifically targets millennial customers. Christian Wiens, CEO and Founder, commented: “Over the last two years, we have shown that our product meets a core need for the young, tech-savvy generation.".

The ongoing battle between South African Insurer Old Mutual and its former CEO Peter Moyo seems to have come to a close, after the High Court in Johannesburg ruled that the company doesn’t have to reinstate the fired Executive. The decision clears the way for the Insurer to now look for a replacement for Moyo and, as a result, the company’s stock has risen. The court upheld an appeal by the Insurer against a judgement delivered in the summer of 2019 that would see the ex-CEO get his old job back.

Zurich Insurance Group has got its hopes up as far as commercial insurance pricing is concerned – something the major Insurer has not felt in a long while. Current market conditions are helping reverse declining commercial insurance premiums, with the combination of inadequate supply and higher disaster payouts giving providers leverage come renewal time.

The Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (DFSA) has ordered Gefion Insurance not to expand its scope of business. The regulator stated that the unrated Motor provider has not complied with its solvency capital requirement. It added that it has assessed that Gefion has “serious liquidity problems” and that it believes that the interests of policyholders and beneficiaries are at risk.

Beazley has launched a “flexible suite” of Directors and Officers (D&O) Liability insurance. The offering ranges from a single policy that covers an organisation and its directors to multiple policies that address the specific needs of individual employees. The suite of products will be sold through regional Brokers as well as the London Market.

A company Director has been sentenced after he doctored a ‘Form of Acceptance’, which he’d used previously, in an attempt to bypass his policy’s claim limit and falsely gain £405k from the Aviva. He was subsequently sentenced to 18 months in prison, suspended for 18 months. He was also ordered to pay £33,410 in compensation, court costs of £6,590 and a £114 victim surcharge.

Steve Lewis has resurfaced as CEO of Pro Global Holdings following his February 2019 exit from RSA UK. He replaces Artur Niemczewski in the role, who left Pro Global at the end of 2019.

Allianz Insurance has announced three new management appointments across its Motor Trade business. Helen Unitt and Spencer Berry both take to the role of Regional Motor Trade Manager, South. Simon Barker takes on the role of Regional Motor Trade Underwriting Manager, North & Scotland. Two more new appointments to its claims supply and experts team include, Nathan McLay has been appointed to the role of Motor Engineer Services Manager, following the retirement of Paul Roberts. Kevin Knight takes on the role of Claims Investigator Operations Manager.

International General Insurance Holdings Limited (IGI), the international specialist commercial Insurer and reinsurer, has announced the appointment of Robin Sidders as Head of Investor Relations.

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (Biba) has named Juliet Williams as its new Area Manager for East and West Midlands, South Wales and Anglia. Williams will be joining Biba on 20 January, replacing Sue Dimmock who will retire from the business in June.

Alan Boswell has hired an additional seven staff from Marsh Commercial’s (formerly Jelf) Grimsby branch which is now shut. The seven staff are set to focus on commercial and SME insurance and join Alan Boswell’s Laceby branch next week. Laceby is about a 15 minute drive from Grimsby.

Simon Cooter has joined Quotall as a Strategic Advisor, following his exit from Covéa in April 2019. The e-trading InsurTech said Cooter would support the direction and strategic vision of the firm.

Specialty international (re)insurance group Chaucer has added Craig Curtiss and Callum Bennett as Class Underwriter and Deputy Class Underwriter, respectively, to its political violence team.

BMS Group has named Alejandro Ceron as Chief Operating Officer of the company’s operations in Latin America & the Caribbean, effective immediately.

Liberty Mutual Re (LM Re), part of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, has announced the appointment of Susan E. Burke as Vice President and Director of assumed reinsurance in its casualty treaty department.

Randall & Quilter Investment Holdings (R&Q) has announced the appointment of William Spiegel as Executive Director and Deputy Group Chairman. Spiegel’s appointment is part of R&Q’s management succession plan. He will assume the role of Executive Group Chairman when R&Q co-founder Ken Randall steps down in approximately 12 months.

PIB Group has announced management changes to enable succession planning within its specialty division, which is home to the group’s specialist commercial lines Brokers. Nigel Salisbury, CEO of the specialty division, is assuming a new position as Chief Commercial Officer and will remain on the executive team to assist with a number of projects, mainly regarding acquisitions. Steve Redgwell has joined PIB with immediate effect, working alongside Salisbury to plan a handover.

Arc Legal Assistance has appointed Tom Moger as its new Commercial Director. Moger will be responsible for all commercial activities within the business, incorporating corporate relations, sales and marketing functions.

Castel Underwriting Agencies Limited has announced the appointment of Raoul Carlos as Head of Specialty as it structures its underwriting cells and MGAs into ’centres of excellence’ focused on core classes of business.

Aston Lark has appointed Ian Jacob to the executive leadership team in the newly created role of Group Chief Risk Officer.

CLS Risk Solutions has announced the appointment of Rob Best as Managing Director of its UK operations.

RSA has confirmed that E-Trading Director Paul Trivett left the business at the end of 2019. It is understood that Trivett opted to leave RSA as part of an ongoing restructure of its UK operations.

Lloyd’s has announced that Jon Hancock will be stepping down as Performance Management Director in 2020. Hancock joined Lloyd’s in September 2016. He had previously spent over 25 years at RSA, most recently in the position of Managing Director, UK Commercial Lines.





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

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