Today’s guest is John Fowle the CEO of Chaucer.

John’s in an enviable position. He has a very large long-term backer in the form of new owner China Re that is effectively providing almost unlimited permanent capital to his business.

Chaucer’s new ownership brings the ability to write almost anything as well as access to the vast Chinese-backed Belt and Road global investment initiative

But just because you can do something, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you should.

This interview turned into a really open and fun discussion.

John’s thoughtful and good humoured personality shines throughout this podcast as I probe him on everything from how ESG and algorithms are going to change underwriting to where Chaucer’s plans to be China Re’s international P&C insurance and reinsurance growth engine will take them.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Todays’ guest is a formidable professional with whom I have been sparring on and off for the last 16 years.

But most of the time that sparring would have gone on behind the scenes and not while notebooks were open, or indeed, the microphones switched on.

That’s because Caroline Wagstaff, who has just been confirmed in post as the permanent CEO of cross-industry body the London Market Group (LMG), has spent her career working on the media relations and strategies of top players in the industry.

In this interview we run through what the LMG is all about and what its top priorities are.

We talk about lobbying government departments and regulators and selling the benefits of the London Market to brokers, customers and future talent from around the world.

There is also a lot of detail around the recent success the LMG has had in getting the UK Government to give regulators an obligation to consider the impact of regulatory activity on the globally competitive position of the market.

Caroline says that a big part of this job is about corralling all the hugely varied and often disparate parts of the market together under common banners.

This job needs a very strong character to bring all the different players together.

Listen to this and I think you’ll see straight away why the LMG board felt Caroline was going to be a good fit for the role.

I always enjoy spending time with Caroline because she is so direct and there is no ambiguity – I think you will too.

NOTES
I refer to The LMG 5-point plan early in the podcast and I think I should have introduced it a bit better, so here it is in all its glory:
https://lmg.london/news/lmg-launches-5-point-plan-to-help-seize-new-global-trade-opportunities/

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is Sian Fisher.

Sian has had an illustrious career in international insurance and this has culminated in a 6-year period as CEO of the UK’s well-renowned professional standards and qualifications body the Chartered Insurance Institute (the CII).

Sian is a strong and vocal female leader in our sector and in her tenure has been a dynamic and effective agent of change at this venerable trade body. I think it’s fair to say that she has shaken things up in this time.

Now her departure has been announced I caught up with her to reflect on her modernising work ,the highs and lows of running a high-profile organisation through Brexit and then Covid and her vision for keeping a hitherto very traditional institution relevant in the 21st century.

We also discuss things that with hindsight she might have done differently and what the future might hold for this highly experienced senior executive.

Sian is great to talk to – she thinks and communicates clearly, she’s eloquent, she’s never shy and she’s always direct.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

 

Mark Wheeler is a Lloyd’s market person through and through. In this interview he even refers to himself as a “Lloyd’s groupie”

That’s why it was great to meet him face to face in his London office within 100 metres of the Lloyd’s building.

We went deeply into what his new venture Mosaic is really all about.

The vision is original and the plan is incredibly ambitious.

Mosaic is trying to bring the core advantages of London syndication and very detailed specialty know-how much closer to clients around the world through localised international distribution.

That’s quite an undertaking.

Listening back Mark is clearly in his element and our knockabout conversation is a testament to that.

There were no taboo subjects.

Mark’s last words of the interview were “we’ve covered a lot of ground, it’s thought-provoking and I really appreciate it”

I agree with Mark.

Let’s see whether you do too.

NOTES:

Mark refers to “G and A” a couple of times. I’m pretty sure he is talking about general and administrative expenses – i.e. the part of the expense ratio that is in the control of the carrier, as opposed to acquisition costs, which are external.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

There are two types of journalist – there are those who really don’t like or trust anyone they write about and then there are those that are the opposite and seem to like everyone.

I am one of the latter – my natural bias is to get a positive vibe from most of the people I interview.

Because of this I make sure I try and balance this inbuilt positivity with a reality check from others around me.

But now I don’t work in a large business any more it’ll be you the listener who has to help me out.

I’m only mentioning all of this because I found today’s guest off the charts in the likeability stakes.

Richard Watson is the co-founder and CEO of Inigo Insurance – a specialty insurance and reinsurance start-up at Lloyd’s.

The business is growing rapidly in this transitioning market and is looking to build something highly focused that seeks to deploy the best new thinking and analysis to big-ticket specialty risk.

In this discussion we get right to the heart of what it is like to be building a differentiated new Lloyd’s franchise in the 2021 market, Lloyd’s market reform and the applications  of algorithms and other smart technologies.

Richard is a London Market veteran and his 33 years at Lloyd’s Blue-chip Hiscox culminated with an 8-year stint as its Chief Underwriting officer, so his views carry a lot of weight.

We also examine Richard’s ideas on how to create a new business that attracts smart, curious and fun people and makes them want to stay.

Richard gives the impression of someone having the time of their life making the most of a rare opportunity to put a career’s learning into practice.

I had a great time – but then I always do – so it’s over to you to tell me anything I’m missing.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

It really matters what today’s guest thinks. This is because he has one of the biggest and most influential underwriting and insurance and reinsurance management jobs in the world.

Stefan Golling serves on Munich Re's Board of Management and until recently was its Chief Underwriter.

He also looks after Global Clients, the North America Division and oversees HSB and American Modern as well as the Lloyd’s and Bermuda markets.

What I enjoy about talking to Stefan is his disarming frankness. He speaks very clearly for someone in such an elevated position in our industry.

In our chat we cover everything anyone would want to know ahead of the first of January 2022 renewals.

Up until now many have described reinsurers as a relatively benign influence, content to ride on the coat-tails of their cedants as they remediated their books and brought pricing back into line.

Now I’ll leave you to decide if this is just a little bravado on Stefan’s part ahead of upcoming renewal negotiations, but from this encounter I would expect to see reinsurers digging in a little more than they have been up until now.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Patrick Tiernan Chief of Markets at Lloyd’s has the broadest job description of almost anyone in insurance.

He is responsible for whole abstract ideas such as ‘Underwriting’ and ‘Distribution’ at a vast global insurance marketplace which can make it sometimes hard to know where to start.

My job as a journalist is to take the abstract and turn it into something really specific and so listening back to today’s interview I must admit I was sometimes a bit annoyed with myself for not diving into every secondary and tertiary line of questioning that our discussion was throwing up.

But then I decided to stop beating myself up.

There was so much to talk about.

With unlimited time we could have done a series of at least five separate podcasts.

The unanswered questions are there to be asked next time in subsequent encounters. Always leave them wanting more…

But what this interview is - is a really useful walk around one of the biggest jobs in insurance and an introduction to the person tasked with taking that role on.

We get to know a little of what makes him tick and there is enough here to get a feel for what sort of reign Patrick’s is going to be over number 1 Lime Street, London, in the coming years.

Patrick is incredibly accessible and transparent and comes across as a very level-headed, logical, thoughtful and reasonable person.

It is clear he has already listened to what the market wants and thought very deeply about what needs to change to keep Lloyd’s relevant, influential and competitive in the future.

He isn’t top-down or dictatorial and with perhaps the exception of when he talks about sustainable underwriting profitability across the cycle, he doesn’t seem in any way dogmatic.

He’s also a great communicator and his delivery is laden with considerable Irish wit and charm. It is very hard not to like him.

As a first portrait it’s a broad-brush one, but I think listening to this podcast will give you a good idea of the big picture

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Bolton Associates for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://www.bolton-associates.co.uk/

 

I love catching up with Robert Lumley (Top) and Stephen Brittain (Bottom) from the Insurtech Gateway because whenever we do we always have a really fascinating conversation.

But I found recording today’s podcast not just fascinating but actually inspiring and energising.

First of all a huge amount has been going on since we last spoke and the pace and maturity of insurtech investment is accelerating.

So at the beginning of the podcast we spend a little time catching up with where the regulated Insurtech Gateway Incubator and Venture Capital Fund is with its growing and maturing portfolio of investment companies.

Then in the second part we start to examine insurtech’s role in improving the world’s resilience to natural catastrophe.

We hear a lot of talk about resilience in the sector and much of it is really well meaning but often lacking in effective vision.

For example at any big insurance conference we will hear very senior leaders talking about how we must close the protection gap. That’s something we can all agree on – but we rarely hear any of those same leaders sell their vision of how exactly we are going to do it.

And that’s why I found this podcast so uplifting.

Technology has a lot of the answers to many of the world’s problems and so does insurance. Yet we have often been going about things the wrong way. Instead of solving real problems for real people we have tended to try and find new ways of selling them insurance products.

Today you’ll learn about a new model that is far more customer led.

Ordinary people don’t wake up every day thinking “I must buy more insurance today” but they do worry that if there is a major storm or flood they will go bust.

Insurtech is filling the gap by solving these client problems increasingly cheaply and efficiently and then bringing the insurance in behind, not the other way around.

What’s more, 15 years ago, when the idea of microinsurance was first gaining currency, there was a sense that it wasn’t really supposed to make money for insurers – that it was an extension of Corporate Social Responsibility or international aid budgets.

But of course loss-making businesses are not sustainable and they are definitely not scalable.

These days insurtechs are coming with a sensible profit motive, acknowledging that everyone in the value chain has to get value and has to make money otherwise the protection gap is never going to be filled.

That’s what is so exciting – it’s a much more mature idea and of course one that will help create potentially trillions of dollars in brand new accretive premium for the global insurance market.

Listen on for some inspiring ideas

Today’s guest is one of those people I always enjoy spending time talking to and was really looking forward to having on the show.

I first met him when he was running Scor’s North American P&C operations when he would often appear at Insurance conferences I was chairing in New York.

Back then Jean-Paul Conoscente was unfailingly charming, calm and very straightforward and open in his approach and always a great asset to any media event.

Some time has passed since my last encounter with him, and in that time he has been promoted to CEO of Scor Global P&C and elevated to the executive committee.

So I am really pleased to report that he is still as friendly and approachable as he ever used to be.

In this podcast we talk about pretty much everything that is affecting the reinsurance market today and in the run-up to the 1.1 renewals.

And from loss trends and price rises, reserving and price adequacy to covid disputes and insurtech, Jean-Paul gives a straight and honest answer to every single question I ask him.

Listen on and you’ll see what I mean.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

It’s a long time since legacy was a dusty dead end of the insurance industry where old underwriters went to eke out the remains of their days before retirement.

And at the same time it’s been a long time since the era when fronting was seen as a bit of a dirty secret of the industry.

These days both segments have matured and taken up their rightful place in the insurance ecosystem.

But it’s rare to meet someone so well qualified and quite so dynamic driving a business that is in both of these spaces.

William Spiegel the Executive Chairman of R&Q is someone with an impeccable resumé as an investor in some blue-chip start-ups in our sector over the past two decades.

And because of that he brings a fresh and very insightful perspective to our industry.

I was really interested to find out why someone like him has decided to come and work on the inside of a mature business at this time.

The answers are all here in the podcast as William describes two fascinating and uncorrelated high-growth profitable business opportunities in our sector.

William is full of energy and drive and it runs all the way through the podcast.

I never thought these segments could sound exciting but William tells a compelling story and the combination of his ruthless business logic and his infectious enthusiasm is a winning one.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s podcast is crackling with energy. When I listened back to the recording it was unmistakable.

The reason is obvious – the subject matter we are discussing is Gallagher’s imminent takeover of Willis Re.

This is the biggest thing to happen in reinsurance broking since Aon bought Benfield back in 2008 and here I spend some time with an ebullient pair of senior executives, clearly ecstatic about how the deal is going to transform the Gallagher group and fulfil its long-held ambition to build a genuinely global reinsurance broker.

Talking to Gallagher Europe Middle East and Asia CEO Simon Matson (Picture Left) and Tom Wakefield the CEO of Gallagher Re (Picture Right) was a lot of fun.

In the next half an hour or so you will get a good idea of how Gallagher plans to welcome, integrate and invest in the newly formed business in the coming years.

We also talk in depth about the dynamics of the global reinsurance market itself, both in the short term, looking at the upcoming renewal season and strategically in the very long term.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

I have met Andreas Berger at various times in the last 15 years and he has been consistently impressive every time I have met him.

It was therefore no surprise when in 2019 Swiss Re came calling with a major task to fix its consistently misfiring and loss-making Corporate Solutions, or CorSo, business unit.

Two years later and the turnaround at CorSo has been remarkable.

I think if you listen here you can see how Andreas has been able to do it.

He does what good managers are supposed to do – he brings technical excellence but doesn’t get bogged down in it; he understands the importance of correct management structures but doesn’t come across like a consultant and he gets tech and data but isn’t a technocrat.

Most importantly he is also really transparent and honest about where things have gone wrong and knows how important it is to make remedial decisions quickly and get on with executing them.

But the key factor overarching all of this is that he is a charismatic communicator who does all of the above with a smile on his face and the ability to bring staff, brokers and clients along with him for the journey.

As you can imagine these ingredients make for a really good podcast, where we get stuck into everything CorSo and all the big challenges facing the industry today.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

Bob Kimmel the CEO of K2 insurance services came on my radar and that of most other London-based insurance folk when last year his US-based MGA group picked up the remnants of what had been the Pioneer group of MGAs to form K2 International.

K2 owns a major collection of MGAs in the US, writes over a billion dollars in premium and is highly acquisitive both of talent, new agencies and other ancillary insurance businesses

I didn’t know Bob personally and researching K2 ahead of our London meeting I suppose I came into this podcast with lots of preconceptions about what the CEO of such a fast-growing and aggressively expansive US-headquartered group would be like.

I was completely wrong.

Bob is clearly very ambitious for K2 but he is also very easygoing and charming as well as being disarming about how steep the learning curve has been for him, a former reinsurance broker, moving much closer to the end insurance customer in the decade since K2’s formation.

New MGA start-ups and acquisitions, a potential Lloyd’s syndicate in the offing and a conscious hunt for talent in specific classes – Bob’s in-tray is absolutely overflowing and in this interview he discusses all aspects of MGA management in a disarmingly open way.

I really enjoyed my time with Bob and I think you will too.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

Today’s podcast is something a little different because instead of talking about our market from the inside we will be looking at it through the eyes of insurance professionals who access our products and services from the outside.

What do our customers really think of us and what are they looking for when they come into the international insurance and reinsurance markets looking to do business?

Michał Chmielewski Deputy Chairman (left) and Tomasz Libront President (right) have built Smartt Re into a significant independent reinsurance broker in the highly competitive and fast-growing Polish market.

Their report card on the London and International insurance markets makes for really interesting listening as well as their description of the huge opportunities as well as the significant  challenges facing the largest market in Central and Eastern Europe.

Michal and Tomasz are very open and frank about their experience and some of the observations are frankly eye-opening,

so for anyone looking to learn what makes an independent local broker in emerging markets tick and what they are really looking for in an international partner this should be required listening.

In insurance and reinsurance we hear a lot of talk about partnerships, but in truth we know that many relationships are marriages of convenience or indeed opportunistic liaisons that are not designed to last.

If I was a reinsurance buyer I would like my reinsurer to be committed to supporting me in the long term and someone who was unlikely to run away if I have had a bad year.

I’d like to be able to confide in them and I’d really value it if they were perhaps even a little boring in their consistency.

Javier San Basilio the CUO of Mapfre Re is very much the embodiment of this old school of reinsurer.

I really enjoyed spending time with someone able to give a calm and considered analysis of the state of the reinsurance market today and I think you will too.

Listen on for valuable insights and a sense of where Mapfre’s steadily increasing influence is likely to be felt in the run-up to 1.1 and beyond.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Jeff Radke is someone who has had senior roles in many areas of the insurance and reinsurance spectrum.

His career ranges from reinsurance broking at Guy Carpenter to running PXRE, one of the last major Bermudian specialist retro writers.

He then played a large variety of senior roles in over a decade at Argo Group, the internationally diversified specialty insurance and reinsurance group formed out of Argonaut’s takeover of PXRE in 2007.

But all those roles had one thing in common – all of them were at the very least one step removed from the end customer

In his latest venture he is applying all that experience to the world of ultra-specialised, ultra-client-focused MGAs.

It is a really interesting proposition because Jeff knows from his own experience that reinsurers and speciality insurers are keen to access portfolios of stable commercial risk to help balance their own increasingly volatile books

Meanwhile after the shake-out and instability of the last couple of years, quality MGAs are looking for really solid and committed paper providers.

Accelerant does all the things that other MGA incubators are doing including providing and sourcing growth capital, but it also uses its own paper and sources long-term third party insurance capital for its MGA members to give a complete service.

It is clear that Jeff is incredibly energised by this project and I think it comes out all the way through this podcast.

Listen on for a really interesting and fun encounter with someone who has clearly got the bit between his teeth.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

One of the best things about this show is that it gives me the perfect excuse to meet people who I have been meaning to meet for ages.

Monica Cramer Manhem, President, International Reinsurance at SiriusPoint is one such guest. Over the last fifteen years many mutual friends have recommended I try to get an audience with her, saying that we would get on really well.

Well they were right. Monica is indeed fantastically good company and right now she has a great story to tell.

SiriusPoint is the product of the merger of two very different legacy businesses and is intent on forging a progressive identity for itself under its new banner.

It’s exciting stuff and in this podcast we go into detail on its transformational plans and the challenges that they will bring.

We also discuss the state of the market after the mid-year renewals and we hear Monica’s own reflections on her long and successful career as a woman in what was - certainly at the very beginning – very much a man’s world.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

https://freepartners.com/

Today’s podcast is in two parts.

It starts off as a quick run through the state of the market through the eyes of two very senior underwriting practitioners

But then it dives right into the heart of the state of the underwriting profession itself and how the life of an underwriter is going to change in the future.

In their high-profile careers both Group Head of Portfolio Underwriting at Swiss Re Silvi Wompa Sinclair and Chief Underwriting Officer of Apollo Syndicate Management James Slaughter have been at the forefront of transforming the business of underwriting and are extremely well placed to outline a vision of the future of the profession.

The message is pretty clear. Transformation in the way all underwriters work is coming and everyone needs to get ready to change the way they do business in order to reap the benefits.

Productivity is set to rise enormously as the machines do a lot more of the grunt work, but the good news for underwriters and brokers is that the roles for the humans in the process are going to become a lot more interesting.

At the same time everyone’s career prospects are going to be boosted hugely.

Listen on for a fascinating and inspiring dive into the future of underwriting.

NOTES:

POC stands for proof of concept, a term usually used when new technology is being tested.

A TOBA is a terms of business agreement, which in our sector is the contract that governs the dealings between a broker and an underwriter.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

When my notebook is put away and the microphones are switched off, after a couple of drinks, people in the market often lament the lack of personalities in the modern insurance and reinsurance industry.

They say that it’s just not like it used to be and that massive consolidation has pushed the individual to the sidelines within ever larger, ever more soulless corporations.

Today’s guests prove that not be true in any sense of the word.

Rod Fox (CEO) founded reinsurance broker and capital advisor TigerRisk thirteen years ago and has been carving a place in the sector and taking the big three brokers head on ever since.

Two years ago fellow reinsurance veteran Rob Bredahl joined the team as President, reuniting the pair who had worked together at Benfield in the early noughties.

When I was organising this interview I was worried that Rob might find it hard to make himself heard because Rod is such a strong character.

I needn’t have worried. Their energy and camaraderie is palpable.

They are also clearly having the time of their lives, as a well-resourced and aggressive TigerRisk looks to take full advantage of the opportunities presenting themselves in a highly fluid reinsurance and capital markets intermediary space.

In this podcast we dissect the state of the market and go into deep detail about how Tiger is planning to double or possibly triple in size in the next five years.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/
We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

https://freepartners.com/

Today’s guests are the executives behind the fast-growing specialist aviation broker start-up Piiq Risk Partners.

In a very short space of time Philip Smaje CEO [picture left] and Marcel Chad President [picture right] have put Piiq on the front pages of the trade press with some eye-popping household name client wins.

In a time of seemingly permanent consolidation and the homogenisation of so much of the intermediary market, theirs is a story that I think will inspire many brokers.

People, connections specialist knowledge and expertise and an ultra-client focused approach are clearly still incredibly important.

Listen on for the secrets of their early successes and what drives their business, an honest assessment of the impending acquisition of their parent company Corant Global by Ardonagh and a frank analysis of the state of the aviation market.

Philip is the first of the two to speak.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Clive Washbourn is a legendary figure in the marine insurance market.

His enviable track record of profitability has made him probably the nearest thing to a celebrity within that very particular, and often very difficult to underwrite, subset of our sector.

So when the news came out that he had started his own marine MGA Navium, on Fidelis’s Pine Walk platform I made sure I put in a request for an interview.

Despite so many years covering the markets I hadn’t met Clive before but you wouldn’t tell from this interview.

Clive is the real deal.

In this episodel I found a lead underwriter completely at ease with himself and rejuvenated at the prospect of building a new business with the benefit of a successful career behind him.

He was also infectiously happy, immensely charismatic and instantly likeable.

What follows is a masterclass in entrepreneurial spirit and the art of successful underwriting.

I also think it reassuring proof that personality still has a huge amount to play in success in many corners of the insurance world.

NOTES

Clive and I couldn't remember exact dates, but the Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger aviation war loss indeed occurred 20 years ago, in July 2001.

Abbreviations: TLO = Total loss only; IV = Increased Value.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

Today’s guest is part of a team busy building a reinsurance broker to challenge the big three almost across the board.

We’ll never see the numbers but it is highly likely that his firm has invested the most of all the challenger reinsurance brokers in the past two years.

During that time it has seen its headcount quintuple to two hundred and twenty-five and it has opened twelve new offices to be represented in thirteen locations.

Despite this incredibly fast growth Keith Harrison International CEO of Lockton Re has his feet firmly on the ground and is one of the most level-headed and straight-talking brokers I have interviewed on this podcast.

Indeed with so much uncertainty for reinsurance intermediaries over the past two years and with the daily news only prolonging the agony for many, Keith’s claim that Lockton Re is actually one of the most stable places to come to work, rings fairly true.

Listen on for more details on how Lockton Re plans to bring the fight to its larger rivals and a comprehensive diagnosis of reinsurance market conditions at the mid-year renewals.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s special episode does exactly what it says on the tin - plus a little more.

AdvantageGo organised a prestigious panel of three prominent US-focused P&C CEOs and I got to work with them on dissecting the state of the market.

Marc Adee, CEO of Crum & Forster, Andrew Robinson CEO of Skyward Specialty and Greg Hendrick the CEO of Vantage Group were all on excellent form as we examined rate adequacy, the prospect for loss trends and whether underwriters might keep ahead of them, resurgent economic and social inflation, the re-rating of cyber insurance and the ever-developing view of the industry Covid loss.

We also rounded up the mid-year renewals, talked about the largely benign impact of reinsurance on the current market, and took a view on the sky-high valuations of public Insurtech stocks and the future of innovation and the industry’s developing relationship with technology.

Many thanks again to AdvantageGo for organising this one – all I had to do was show up and ask the questions!

Enjoy the podcast.

NOTES

Greg Hendrick couldn't remember who said the famous quote about the market being able to stay irrational longer that you can stay solvent. This one is from the British economist John Maynard Keynes.

 

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

I have to admit that today’s guest took me by surprise.  Could she be the most powerful female CEO in the world?

Well, maybe.

She sits at the head of a global broking organisation that has six billion dollars in revenue and handles around sixty billion dollars in gross premiums.

If Willis and Aon finally merge, Olga Collins will be the CEO of the world’s third-largest broking organisation.

In this podcast we go deep into the detail of the Worldwide Broker Network and how it has set itself up to compete with the dwindling group of wholly-owned global intermediaries.

Unsurprisingly I found Olga in bullish mood and licking her lips at the prospect of so many clients falling through the cracks as their big broker advocates work out where they stand with their current or prospective employers.

Anyone who thinks the day of the independent broker has come and gone should have a word with Olga first.

Her attitude is refreshing and she is probably the most client-focused guest I have ever had on the show.

LINKS

https://wbnglobal.com/

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s special episode is all about how to build a company culture that helps your business to win.

To this end I was very lucky to be joined by John Fay MBE (pictured bottom right) and Edward Gordon Lennox (pictured bottom left) of Delta V Partners to help me dig deeply into the subject.

John and Edward are experts in the field who are much in demand across all sectors and in multiple countries around the world.

They talk our language and know how to get the best out of us. They don’t spout jargon and they are very down-to-earth, practical and pragmatic: they’re a bit like us insurance folk really.

The team from Delta V are going to show us the ropes in plain English so you will be able to get your head around this topic and understand all the key themes.

Then to make it even more practical we will hear from an industry practitioner who has gone through this process on more than one occasion.

Steve Hearn CEO of Corant Global needs no introduction.

In fact I got to know Delta V because John Fay MBE listened to the recent podcast I did with Steve where he mentioned the work they had done.

So with Steve’s appearance we will top off the theory with straightforward advice on what to expect when building a culture in practice.

CONTACTS:

Delta V Partners Company contact emails:

hello@deltav.com
info@deltavpartners.com

Website: https://deltavpartners.com/

John Fay:
Twitter: @nuasafc
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/fayjohn/

Edward Gordon Lennox:
LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/edward-gordon-lennox-164685b/

It is only a recently rebranding exercise that has made the size and scale of today's guest's broking and MGA operation come into view.

David Bearman is the founder and CEO of London-based Aventum, a group that houses the Rokstone MGA and broker Consilium and controls over £600mn in gross written premium.

The group has been around for 25 years but has only just put its head above the parapet and started to show itself to the market.

I am really glad to have David on the show. He reminds me of the great broking pioneers and transmits all the energy and entrepreneurial spirit that some say is lacking in the London Market.

In a time of extreme broker consolidation and a worry that customer choice and competition may in some way be curtailed it is reassuring to meet someone with his ambition and buzz.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is someone I have known for almost 30 years. That’s because I used to broker business to him back in the 1990s when I was working in the London Market.

Back then he was making a name for himself as a lead market in the international casualty class at UK composite Eagle Star.

As my career changed completely his took off and at QBE Europe he swiftly rose the ranks to become its most senior underwriting executive.

Then eight years ago he left to pursue the dream of founding a Lloyd’s business of his own.

Anyone who met Ash Bathia CEO of Probitas 1492 thirty years ago will have marked out as someone with the ambition and drive to make a real impact on the market.

And as it turned out Ash was going to need all of that drive and a lot more. Probitas had as tough a start in life as it is possible to have.

Born right at the nadir of one of the longest soft markets in history, Probitas was hit hard by the unexpected loss of its cornerstone capital provider and extremely challenging early underwriting numbers in its ramp-up years.

Almost all of its peers folded or were actively shuttered by Lloyd’s itself in its recent remediation phase.

But today Probitas is a top Lloyd’s performer and is pre-empting capacity and scaling up as market conditions continue to turn in its favour.

Interviewing Ash was just like broking to him all those years ago. He hasn’t changed much.

He is still smart, sharp and direct with great charm. And he is a great trader, problem-solver and dealmaker in the classic Lloyd’s entrepreneurial tradition.

The difference is that to those skills you can now add maturity, humility and the wisdom that comes from starting and running a business of his own.

These days Ash has one hell of a story to tell.

I’m just grateful that he let me be the first to get it out of him.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

As Chief Underwriting Officer of Tokio Marine Kiln (TMK) Matthew Shaw has one of the top ten individual underwriting jobs in the London market, marshalling a stamp capacity of one and a half billion pounds at one of Lloyd’s best-known lead markets, Syndicate 510.

In many ways this business is a microcosm of the London Market as a whole.

A soft market fall into loss was followed by significant re-underwriting.

Then the business bounced significantly back into profit in 2019, only to take a large short-tail hit from Covid in 2020, which it has weathered undaunted.

2021 has seen a bullish 14.9 percent pre-emption in capacity amid the heady combination of significant growth in submissions and continually improving underwriting conditions across the market.

Matthew is very easy to talk to and together we embark on a comprehensive tour of his views on the market, market reform and innovation, culture change and where TMK fits into it all.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Executive Chairman Neil Eckert and Group CEO Trevor Carvey are the team behind Conduit Re, a new London-listed Bermuda-based reinsurer.

Neil is one of the insurance industry’s most successful serial entrepreneurs, so when someone of his experience and pedigree senses an opportunity we should all take notice.

Conduit’s single-location pure reinsurance design is quite different from its class of 2020 peers and here we go deep into the pair’s thinking behind why they have set things up the way they have.

Neil and Trevor are direct and easy to talk to and I think their answers are really illuminating.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s podcast with Steve McGill, Founder and CEO of McGill and Partners was recorded live. The Voice of Insurance was invited to produce the opening fireside chat at the highly successful Insurtech 3 point 0 insurtech event and we thought it would be fun for a change.

Doing things truly live is always different and often unexpected.

You’ll find this one a bit faster than usual – that’s not because I have suddenly lost my manners and enjoying interrupting but because I am keeping to a strict time schedule and sometimes need to move things along so we don’t run out of time.

There are also a few thrills and spills, but that’s all part of the fun of doing things live with no safety net.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

 

Today’s guests head one the largest and best-placed new businesses in the market.

This is because it had a long head-start on the class of 2020.

Before the market turn became obvious last year it already had $1.7bn in capital committed and underwriting teams in place. Then with the hardening in full swing it accelerated its growth plan and almost doubled that capital base.

Convex’s Chairman and CEO Stephen Catlin and Deputy CEO Paul Brand have had impeccable timing and are looking to use the benefit of all their long experience building Catlin into a global specialty insurer and reinsurer to good use with their new project.

It’s clear from this interview that they intend to do everything better, stronger and faster and what’s more they plan to enjoy the journey more along the way.

Here we dissect the market opportunity for this very large legacy-free start-up from every angle and leave no topic off the table.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

Today’s guest has one of the biggest single jobs in our business.

As President of Property & Casualty for Swiss Re in the US Keith Wolfe has huge responsibility

This is because on most measures his employer is the largest writer of reinsurance in the US.

This gives him unrivalled visibility on what is the largest insurance market in the world.

I have met Keith many times in the past, chairing him at US-based conferences.

He is always good-humoured and always says it like it is in ways that you might not expect from someone who is part of such a large multinational organisation.

I’m happy to report that in this encounter he was on excellent form as we dissected the US market from top to bottom via Covid, Casualty, Cyber, Insurtech, automatic underwriting and of course the state of the market and the prospects for upcoming renewals.

LINKS:

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is the leader of one of London’s oldest independent broking houses.

Greg Collins is CEO of Miller, which via major new investment has just extricated itself from the Willis Towers Watson Group.

In this podcast we get right to the heart of why the firm’s innovative experiment with Big-three ownership didn’t work out and what this wholesale specialty broker plans to do with its new-found freedom.

Greg comes across as someone completely on top of his game and speaks like he has had a weight lifted off his shoulders. It is refreshing to hear.

Tune in for insights into Miller’s growth strategy, the reinsurance broking landscape, technological and cultural modernisation and why Miller won’t be doing anything to upset its US wholesale relationships.

LINKS:

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is an amazing person with an incredibly interesting story to tell.

After 10 years in the British military and distinguished service in Iraq, Forbes McKenzie was determined to apply the skills he had learned in military intelligence in the civilian world.

A decade and lots of hard work later, McKenzie Intelligence Services (MIS) is bringing real-time intelligence to bear on natural disasters and manmade events alike and has won a major tender to provide its services across the Lloyd’s market.

As Forbes describes in the podcast, users of the firm’s GEO platform are improving reserving estimates by 93%, cutting claims overheads by 40% and this is making an average 2 percentage point improvement to loss ratios.

Here we talk about the art of blending multiple data sources to provide insights that insurers can use instantly.

But because this is such a cutting-edge business we get to look into the future and a world of really smart, really focused artificial intelligence, instant straight through claims payments, hugely expanded parametric insurance and the future of exposure management.

Forbes is excellent company and has a great way of turning complicated ideas into simple and understandable insights that you can use to improve the way you go about your business today.

LINKS:

Mckenzie Intelligence Services (MIS)
https://www.mckenzieintelligence.co.uk/

LinkedIn
https://www.linkedin.com/company/mckenzie-intelligence-services-ltd

Twitter: @McKenzie_Int

Forbes McKenzie LinkedIn:
(Connect and ask him how he came to be mentioned in dispatches in Iraq)
https://uk.linkedin.com/in/forbes-mckenzie-904a4842

Twitter: @forbesmckenzie

Today’s guest is an example to those of us who feel we ought to change with the times but might not feel we are fully equipped to do so.

Matthew Wilson is the Group CEO of Brit and is a Lloyd’s man through and through.

He has spent most of his career going about his business in the same analogue way that most of us are familiar with.

Yet he has embarked on a transformation programme at Brit to overhaul everything it does in readiness for a digital future.

A three-year migration of systems to the cloud is just coming to fruition and last year’s pioneering launch of Ki, Brit’s algorithmically driven follow syndicate, is still being digested by the market.

In this podcast we focus on how Brit and Lloyd’s can embrace a digital future and reap expense savings, productivity gains and huge business benefits if it can turn its analogue platform into a digital one.

Whilst the technical challenges are never to be underestimated, this discussion shows that the greatest hurdles are far more likely to be self-imposed cultural ones.

From this encounter it becomes clear that only until we can learn to accept change can we innovate successfully.

I would venture that if Matthew can do it, so can the rest of the market.

So I highly recommend this one to anyone looking for pointers on where to start and how to begin embracing the insurance market of the future.

Enjoy the Podcast.

NOTES:
The iMRC acronym Matthew mentions stands for the Intelligent Market Reform Contract and is part of the Lloyd’s Blueprint 2 programme.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

I really enjoyed interviewing today’s guest.

I think it was because I was picking up on the energy, enthusiasm and buzz emanating from someone who is running a start-up business.

Mitch Blaser, the CEO of Mosaic has done this before and it is his clarity of vision and purpose that shines through our discussion.

He has the benefit of experience to know what he would do differently and he also has a very clear idea of how to leverage the advantages of a single clean balance sheet with new investors and no legacy risk and equally as important to Mitch, a brand new enterprise with no legacy systems, technology or culture.

The prospects of the post-Covid world of emerging risk are what are firing Mitch and his team of specialty underwriters up

But overall it is Mitch’s irrepressible positivity and confidence that is most infectious.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Free Partners for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/
https://freepartners.com/

This week’s podcast is a great encounter with a UK MGA pioneer at the top of his game.

Colin Thompson is the CEO of Nexus Group, a firm he founded in London 13 years ago.

That business is projecting punchy organic growth of a third this year to $600mn in premiums written.

It is also on the hunt for ever larger acquisitions and is looking to back some of its own underwriting with a risk-bearing entity to show its paper providers that it has real skin in the game.

During our chat Colin also confirms that Nexus will be selling its trade credit broking arm to focus exclusively on underwriting.

We cover a huge amount of ground here and a lot is revealed about the next strategic direction for what is almost certainly London’s fastest-growing MGA business of scale.

We also learn a lot about what makes the entrepreneur driving its growth tick.

LINKS:
We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:
https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:
https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is one of the best-known and most experienced executives in the reinsurance broking world.

Ross Howard is Global Executive Chairman of Lockton Re and has launched himself into a major project to help build a challenger reinsurance broker for the Lockton Group.

In this podcast we find out why he thinks the current market opportunities are some of the best he has seen in his long career and why, provided you have the right platform as a base, knowledge, expertise and relationships are more important than they have ever been.

I have been meeting and interviewing Ross on and off for around 15 years and I think some of that rapport shows in this encounter.

Ross is the consummate broker: charming, knowledgeable, accommodating, imaginative and unflappable.

I highly recommend you spend the next half an hour or so in his company.

LINKS:

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

This episode could easily be called “everything you wanted to know about insurtech but were afraid to ask.”

This is because today’s guests are insurtech pioneers who spend their time finding new insurance ideas and the entrepreneurs behind them.

They knock the rough edges off, apply expertise, lend regulatory licences so that ideas can be tested and make connections with incumbent insurers as well as investors. They also deploy their own venture capital funds into the companies they find.

In short they provide one of the few full service platforms for innovative new ventures and fulfil the role of translators between the often disconnected worlds of technology and insurance.

Now with five years’ experience The Voice of Insurance spoke to Stephen Brittain and Robert Lumley of the Insurtech Gateway to find out what they had learned after being at the bleeding edge of insurance innovation for such a long time.

The results may surprise you.

Here you can get to half a decade’s learning compressed into half an hour. A pioneer like The Gateway has often had to learn the hard way.

By listening to this excellent episode you won’t have to...

 

LINKS

https://insurtechgateway.com/

Today’s guest is one of the industry’s brightest stars and I think the podcast you are about the listen to amply proves why he has earned that moniker.

The Voice of insurance has also been lucky enough to speak to him at an exciting time for him and the industry itself.  

A veteran of the Bermuda class of 1992, he is back again with a substantial start-up looking to capitalise on major opportunities in the global wholesale specialty insurance and reinsurance market.

Here Greg Hendrick the CEO of Vantage Group runs us through his vision from top to bottom and dissects in great detail how he and his team is attacking a market opportunity.

Greg has long been one of the best speakers on the insurance conference circuit and here it soon becomes obvious that podcasting comes naturally to him.

Here is someone happy, confident, energised, completely at the top of their game and ready to put a career’s worth of knowledge and experience to work in a favourable marketplace.

There is a ton of useful information here and I think you can learn a lot from listening over the next 35 minutes or so.

LINKS:

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s special guests are technology entrepreneurs looking to digitise and revolutionise the reinsurance marketplace.

Their radical free-to-use platform has the goal of making the cumbersome submission and placement process pain-free for practitioners.

But with these two there’s a big difference. Both Jerad Leigh and Ben Rose of Supercede gave up successful careers in the underwriting, broking and advisory side of reinsurance to found their business.

Past attempts at reinsurance platforms have tended to focus on getting the boardrooms of the biggest players signed up and mandating usage on the ground but as former practitioners their focus is on solving the problems of the individual users themselves.

As we move to an expense conscious world where big IT spend for no discernible competitive gain is no longer a boast but potentially a source of embarrassment, their free and fully independent model is a compelling one.

In this special episode we naturally go for a whirlwind tour of the Supercede product offering, but we stay much longer and get to the heart of what these two founders think the reinsurance market of the future is going to look like and their part in enabling it.

Not only are Ben and Jerad exceptionally bright, they are excellent company.

I highly recommend listening to what they have to say.

NOTES:

You may already know Supercede by its original name, Riskbook.

Ben mentions a business called Rightmove. For non-UK listeners this is the main UK platform for residential real estate, connecting realtors/(real) estate agents and individual buyers.

LINKS:

https://supercede.com/
https://www.linkedin.com/company/supercede1/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeraddleigh/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/ben-rose-supercede/

After an extended build-out Pina Albo’s Hamilton Group now has significant Lloyd’s, Bermuda and Dublin platforms covering specialty insurance, reinsurance and third-party asset management and is building further capabilities on the ground in the US E&S market via an MGA structure.

It’s also fully committed to a tech-enabled US brokered small commercial joint venture operation in Attune.

Listen to Pina as the group moves to the execution phase of its strategy and looks to be rewarded for the patience it has shown throughout the prolonged soft market into which it was born.

Pina is a focused leader with strong convictions about where the market is headed.

Her conclusions are concise, unambiguous and easy to follow.

I highly recommend a listen.

NOTES:

Pina refers to Ada Re in relation to Hamilton’s party capital management operation. Ada Re is specifically Hamilton’s retro sidecar vehicle. She of course meant to say Ada Capital.

LINKS:

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s guest is a broking CEO on an ambitious mission to grow global revenues many times with the backing of a strategic owner.

That may sound familiar to regular listeners, but Steve Hearn of Corant Global is going about things quite differently.

At a time when most broker holding companies are at pains to hive up all their underlying brands into an overarching global brand identity, Steve is allowing multiple broking houses to flourish under the newly-minted Corant banner.

A veteran of senior executive positions at large and small brokers alike, Steve now runs a holding company and not an operational broking business.  

This means he isn’t bogged down or distracted by the day to day and has the job of thinking strategically about where broking in our market is going in the short, medium and long term and positioning Corant accordingly. 

Corant also has a different sort of owner – the capital markets focused BGC and ultimately the Cantor Fitzgerald group.

And the influence of this different variant of financial services culture is highly noticeable.

And that’s what makes this podcast special.

Rarely have I had such a focused conversation on what is happening in the broking landscape and where things are headed.

LINKS.

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

This week’s guest is a longstanding and integral member of one of the most successful underwriting teams in the specialty insurance and reinsurance world.

Charles Mathias was an original member of staff at Lancashire and is now a core member of the team at Fidelis.

As Chief Risk officer and board member he has total visibility of Fidelis’s strategy and here he doesn’t duck any questions.

I was surprised by how open he was with me about which segments of the market the now capital-loaded Fidelis is finding most attractive as well as its approach to developing proprietary technology.

Again he is completely transparent about the special culture and work ethic that has made Richard-Brindle led carriers so distinctive, and so successful in the past 15 years.

This longstanding market practitioner is also incredibly polite and good humoured company.

All this makes this episode one not to miss for anyone who wants to learn the secrets of underwriting success in the hardening market of 2021.

NOTES

Charles refers to a charitable foundation, he is of course referring to the Fidelis Foundation.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

 

In my job I talk to a lot of entrepreneurs and particularly insurtech entrepreneurs.

Very often I find that they know their tech but really haven’t yet got to understand the insurance world.

And that often means that they are solving problems that perhaps don’t exist in the minds of insurance people and their business are unlikely to succeed.

Well today I’m talking to a start-up founder who has insurance running through his veins.

James York knows the insurance value chain inside and out.

Because of that he knows that anyone who can cut into the savage acquisition costs insurers load onto themselves year after year is onto a winner.

In an industry that spends billions on marketing anyone who can make that spend more effective is going to be in high demand.

James is the founder of Worry + Peace, which is aiming to do just this via the medium of insurance reviews.

It’s a bold and extremely ambitious global vision that goes way beyond reviews and into a whole insurance ecosystem that will aim to bring buyers and sellers together in a trusted world but which isn’t actively trying to sell insurance to anyone.

Are you intrigued? I certainly was and the more I talk to James the more I think he is onto something.

I think you should hear him out.

LINKS and Contacts:

https://worryandpeace.com/

James’s Twitter handle is: @JamesJWYork

Nick Cook of BMS Group is a man in a hurry to make the most of global opportunities to grow the 41-year old firm he runs.

Nick is refreshingly straightforward and to the point and here we get detail on BMS’s ambitious global buildout away from its more traditional markets in London and North America and into Latin America, Asia and Europe.

We also get a strong view on the opportunities being thrown up by big broker M&A as well as the capital factors driving substantial investment and consolidation at independents.

Nick also dissects the current fight to build challenger reinsurance brokers and how he thinks this particular game might not end well for everyone.

Finally we hear of bullish prospects for the London market and Nick’s thoughts and misgivings about the current vision for London’s future.

We pack in a lot here but listening back it is Nick’s boundless energy and no-nonsense passion for the task in hand that really shines through our exchange.

Enjoy the podcast.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today we're talking to Matthew Moore President & Managing Director at Liberty Specialty Markets – LSM.

Matthew is one of the rising stars of the London Market and is currently serving as the chair of industry trade body the London Market Group.

Yet his role is global in nature.

He oversees a specialty, wholesale and reinsurance operation with gross written premiums of around $7bn of which London business is a minority.

In this wide-ranging podcast we get the benefit of this global perspective on opportunities in the hardening market as well as going into the detail on the drivers behind the essential reform process that the London Market is currently undergoing.

We also got to hear about Matthew’s thoughts on the future of insurance, industry price adequacy and reserve strength, Covid 19 estimates and how he is trying to make LSM differentiate itself in a competitive and capital-abundant marketplace.

Matthew is very enjoyable company and an insightful insurance thinker and communicator.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

Today’s podcast is a meeting with a senior market figure most of us have known for many years.

Sean McGovern served in different board level capacities at Lloyd’s for just over 2 decades, before leaving to join the then XL Catlin in 2016 ahead of its 2018 acquisition by AXA.

Last summer he was made CEO of AXA XL’s UK and Lloyd’s business – the first time he has held a CEO post.

This interview is all about his plans for the role now that the difficult remedial actions aimed at turning around the large London Market insurer’s underwriting performance have been taken and market conditions have taken a decisive turn for the better.

As a veteran Lloyd’s spokesperson Sean has been in the public eye for many years and in this encounter I found him easy-going, relaxed and excited to be running a major London operation with the backing of the world’s largest P&C group behind him

Listen on for an insider’s view of the opportunities currently presenting themselves in the London market.

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) and Insurtech Gateway for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

https://insurtechgateway.com/

This podcast is all about looking to the future of broking.

In a world of automatic, algorithmically controlled capacity where huge rivers of data flow direct from insureds and reinsureds to carriers and beyond where does this leave the broker?

Brokers and technological change haven’t necessarily always gone hand in hand in our markets.

It was brokers that spurned the early versions of electronic placing and constantly worried about whether they would be disintermediated.

But these days a new broker is emerging – one less tied up in extracting remuneration out of the transaction and more intent on adding value through advice and advanced risk management services to their clients.

This is what I am discussing today with Clyde Bernstein, Head of Broking, Willis Towers Watson Great Britain.

A Willis lifer, Clyde is an extremely well-known figure in the London Market. Anyone who has spent enough time walking down Lime Street will recognise him because he has been in the market for over 30 years.

He is excellent company, is extremely eloquent and most importantly, he knows the market inside and out.

That is why his articulation of a vision for the future of broking is so compelling and real. If someone of his analogue pedigree has been bitten by the tech bug, we all will be.

With people like Clyde around, who would bet against the electronic underwriters of the future complaining that the brokers still always seem to be one step ahead of them?

LINKS

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

 

Today’s guest is one of the industry’s smartest analysts and it is great to welcome him back to the show.

David Flandro is the Managing Director of Analytics at HX, the tech and research-focused part of the Howden Group and today we are dissecting the state of the market after the 1.1.21 renewals.

David has had a long career in the financial markets and at major broking houses and is one of the best people I know at expressing often very complicated ideas and theories in the plainest of English.

He also has a great sense of humour and is always ebullient company which means while the English may be plain, the discussion and the mood is always lively.

In this podcast we discuss a lot of the topics raised in Howden's Hard Times 1.1 renewal report. I highly recommend you read this in conjunction with your listen today. 

NOTES

Howden's Hard Times market report:

https://www.howdengroup.com/sites/g/files/mwfley566/files/inline-files/Howden%20Market%20Report%20-%20HARD%20TIMES%2004-01-21_0.pdf

David mentions a Julian. He is referring to Julian Alovisi, HX’s Head of Research.

We thank our naming sponsor AdvantageGo - enabling an enterprise view of exposure:

https://www.advantagego.com/

We also thank Claims Direct Access (CDA) for their support today:

https://www.claimsdirectaccess.com/

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