On Diversity and Inclusion

Over the course of this year, a number of organisations in the London insurance market have publically committed to Lloyd’s Diversity and Inclusion Charter. A steering group of inclusion champions led by Aon’s Dominic Christian will be issuing guidance in 2015 on how signatories can get started on policies and practices to promote positive change in our industry. High on the list of priorities will … Continue reading On Diversity and Inclusion

On Wholesalers Endangered

The increasing dominance of the global brokers and the economic leverage that this provides is a strategic challenge for all insurers dependent upon them for significant premiums flows. Responses in the industry have varied but a growing number of companies are re-engineering the way they procure business from the big three; either paying to obtain data services or participating on proprietary risk placement platforms and in … Continue reading On Wholesalers Endangered

On Leaving Europe

True, emotions were running high over the exorbitant costs of implementing Solvency II, widely seen as a project poorly mishandled in Brussels, but in adding his signature to an open letter to The Times in January 2013 supporting David Cameron’s yes/no referendum strategy on UK’s European Union (EU) membership, Lloyd’s Chairman John Nelson may have sent a hawkish signal to producers on the Continent whose … Continue reading On Leaving Europe

On Going Global

  The Japanese fiscal year drew to a close at March end with all three major insurers posting stronger 2013 earnings. This despite a weaker contribution from domestic non-life business hit hard by the February snowstorms. No surprise therefore that the stand-out performance was from Tokio Marine whose profitability increased by 42% largely on the back of executing a more aggressive investment strategy internationally compared … Continue reading On Going Global

On Impaired Vision

Less than two years ago Lloyd’s revealed to the London insurance community a vision of itself in 2025 enthusiastically endorsed by Prime Minister David Cameron. At its heart was a repositioning of the market to take advantage of the opportunities in the world’s high growth economies. Since then the Lloyd’s hierarchy have sat at the front of the bus on some high-profile overseas trade missions … Continue reading On Impaired Vision

On Keeping Customers Close

Dragging French reinsurer SCOR Re back from the brink and restoring the company’s credibility and financial security was an achievement many in the market thought impossible. So when their CEO Denis Kessler, who engineered this much lauded comeback spoke about the emerging economies at the AM Best Conference last week, as reported in Insurance Insider, his comments were not without significance. His rallying cry for … Continue reading On Keeping Customers Close

On Other People’s Money

Although there have been a few acquisitions at Lloyd’s since, none were as bold as Catlin’s takeover of Wellington in 2006 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The new enlarged syndicate immediately became the largest at Lloyd’s; a position it holds today, writing gross premiums of nearly £1.8 billion last year. Surprising many back then, in addition to acquiring the managing agency, Catlin also bought … Continue reading On Other People’s Money

On the Cost of Doing Business

Already 2013 has the air of being a transformative year for the industry. Over the past 12 months the usage of non-traditional sources of capital has arguably reached a tipping point that shifts the reinsurance business model possibly forever and not just in response to the low interest rate world we presently live in. Equally the quota share sidecar deal struck in March between Aon … Continue reading On the Cost of Doing Business

On Lloyd’s and its Brokers

The early 1980s was a golden era of the Lloyd’s Broker start-up. Men (they were all men in those days) with guile, flair and no shortage of talent, bored by the humdrum of working in old-school-tie broking houses, joined together to create new and exciting businesses. It was no coincidence that the focus for these entrepreneurs was the US reinsurance market where those who were … Continue reading On Lloyd’s and its Brokers

On Underwriting Endangered

The quota-share, that simplest of arrangement where premiums and claims are split by the parties in a pre-agreed fixed proportion, is losing its innocence. Traditionally constructed as a treaty between an insurance company and its reinsurer, a quota-share offers the purest alignment of interest and remains the favoured approach for those providing risk capital to risk takers. You win, we win. You lose, we lose. … Continue reading On Underwriting Endangered