Insurance transitions continue for September

Movements and transitions within the industry continue this month.

IAG Chief Risk Officer to retire

IAG has announced its Chief Risk Officer (CRO) Clayton Whipp intends to retire from the company by the end of March 2018. An international search is underway to replace him.

IAG Managing Director and CEO Peter Harmer thanked Whipp for his contribution since he joined the company in 2007.

“Clayton has played a key role at IAG, with initial accountability for our corporate finance function and then the important task of managing risk across IAG and its brands in New Zealand, Australia and Asia. We wish him well in the future,” Harmer said.

Whipp was Group General Manager Corporate Finance and then acting Chief Strategy Officer before being appointed CRO in March 2015.

Zurich’s US chief to step down

Mike Foley has been chief executive of Zurich North America since 2008 but will retire with effect from January 1 to pursue a career in fintech.

Zurich said Foley’s next career steps would focus “on the rapidly evolving insuretech market,” without giving details. Foley would remain on several of Zurich’s US boards and the insurer would also retain links with him via “possible collaboration in his future ventures.”

Foley will be replaced as head of Zurich in the US by Kathleen Savio, who has worked with the Swiss insurer for 25 years, most recently as head of its North American alternative markets unit.

“Kathleen is precisely the type of new-thinking people-focused business leader we need to lead our North American operations in this next phase,” he said. “She understands what it takes to grow a successful insurance business, has direct experience with various business models, and drives an unrelenting performance culture among her teams. She’ll be a welcome addition to our global executive management team.”

Willis Towers Watson reveals two new appointments

Willis Towers Watson has appointed Michael (Mike) Baker and Bill Callan to the role of Property and Casualty (P&C) Leader for New South Wales and Victoria, respectively. Baker will commence his position in November and Callan’s appointment is effective immediately.

Baker will join the Australian team from Willis Towers Watson in Singapore, where he has held the roles of Head of Corporate and Client Relationship Director since 2013. He will be based in Sydney, reporting to Katie Simmonds, Willis Towers Watson’s General Manager of Corporate Risk and Broking – NSW.

Callan is based in Melbourne, where most recently he was the state leader of Willis Towers Watson’s Construction and Corporate teams. He will report to Darren Oliver, Willis Towers Watson’s General Manager of Corporate Risk and Broking – Victoria/SA.

Andrew Boal, Head of Australasia, commented on the appointments: “In their new roles, Bill and Mike will be responsible for leading our P&C client service teams, incorporating our Corporate, Construction and Insolvency offerings. These critical positions form part of our strategy to focus our business around client needs.

“We’re thrilled to have an internationally experienced Willis Towers Watson colleague of Mike’s calibre re-join our team in Australia, and proud to provide Bill with the opportunity to further expand his areas of responsibility. We believe their deep sector knowledge, expertise and innovative thinking will help us tap opportunities and bring real benefits to clients. With senior appointments like Mike and Bill, we’re further positioning our Corporate Risk and Broking teams to support changing market demand and ensure we deliver successful outcomes for clients through playing a proactive role in managing clients’ business risks.”

Prior to his role with Willis Towers Watson in Singapore, Baker held the position of Vice President, Casualty Division, Asia Pacific for Liberty International Underwriters. Before that, he worked for Willis (now Willis Towers Watson) in Sydney as a Global Client Advocate where he developed overall client relationships with some of Willis’ largest clients in Australia. He has also held roles in Sydney and London with organisations including Vero, Aon and Royal Sun Alliance. Baker has a strong client focus and is highly passionate about people leadership.

Callan has over 18 years’ experience in management roles within the Victorian insurance broking market. He has been with Willis Towers Watson since 2013 as a state-based practice manager. Previously, he was Divisional Manager – Corporate with JLT, and before that was Victorian Managing Director of Zuellig Insurance Brokers. He has a history of achievement including returning divisions to profit, achieving strong revenue growth, leading bottom line improvement, and creating and maintaining stable workforces aligned to business needs.

John Neal is stepping down as CEO of QBE Insurance

After five years as CEO, he will be replaced by Pat Regan, chief executive of Australian and New Zealand operations and a former CFO, from January 2018.

Regan said: “QBE has some clear strengths and great franchises, as well as talented and dedicated people and I am delighted to be appointed to lead the group. One of my first priorities will be to lead a search for my successor as chief executive officer of our Australian and New Zealand Operations.”

Before joining QBE he was the chief financial officer at Aviva plc in London, group chief operating officer and chief financial officer at Willis Group Holdings, group financial controller at Royal & Sun Alliance and AXA SA’s finance and claims director for the UK General Insurance business (2001 – 2004).

QBE chairman Marty Becker says Regan has led a strong turnaround in the Australian and New Zealand operations.

Willis Towers Watson strengthens Corporate Risk and Broking business 

Willis Towers Watson has revealed that Katherine (Katie) Simmonds will join the organisation as General Manager of its Corporate Risk and Broking (CRB) business in New South Wales. Simmonds will take up her appointment in October and will report to Andrew Boal in his capacity as Head of CRB for Australia.

Simmonds said: “I’m excited to join Willis Towers Watson’s Corporate Risk and Broking business at a time when it is strengthening its solutions offering to clients across Australasia. Willis Towers Watson’s unwavering focus on providing exceptional client service in a team environment closely mirrors my own personal values and I look forward to leading the CRB NSW team as we further cement deep client relationships locally.”

Commenting on her experience in the financial services industry, Boal said: “Katie is an exceptional choice to lead our sizeable CRB team in New South Wales.  As more and more clients turn to us to help them quantify, mitigate and transfer risk, her arrival will play an important part in managing their business risks while driving strong organisational performance.”

Simmonds’ experience includes Lloyd’s and corporate insurer markets, as well as client advisory roles in M&A. In her most recent position, she led Ironshore Australia and New Zealand as Managing Director/Country Head. Previously, she was Head of M&A Insurance, Asia Pacific for AIG, and before that worked with Minter Ellison Lawyers in a Private Equity and M&A focused client advisory role. Simmonds holds a Juris Doctor (Law), Bachelor of Commerce and Diploma of Languages from the University of Melbourne and has been admitted as a Solicitor in Victoria and New South Wales.

Marsh reveals new global management structure 

John Doyle, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marsh, has unveiled the firm’s new global management structure, including new appointments to its executive management team, effective immediately.

Marsh’s global management structure includes the newly-formed Global Risk & Digital (GR&D) division, which brings together Marsh’s wide range solutions and products for small commercial businesses, families and individuals. GR&D also comprises Marsh’s consulting practices and its data, digital, and analytics solutions. John Drzik, previously President of Global Risk & Specialties, has been appointed President of Global Risk & Digital. Drzik will report to Doyle and will continue to serve on Marsh’s Executive Committee.

Marsh’s management structure also includes the newly-formed Global Placement & Specialties division, which encompasses Marsh’s insurance placement activities as well as its global industry and practice specialties. Marsh’s Global Placement operations include Retail and Specialty, Wholesale, and Portfolio Solutions. Global Specialties operations include Aviation, Construction, Credit, Energy, Marine, Private Equity and M&A (PEMA) and Infrastructure. Dean Klisura has been appointed President, Global Placement and Specialties. In this role, Klisura will report to Doyle and serve on Marsh’s Executive Committee.

Marsh’s new structure also includes Marsh International, which comprises operations in Africa, Asia, Continental Europe, Latin America & the Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Pacific, and UK & Ireland. Flavio Piccolomini has been appointed President of Marsh International, reporting to Mr. Doyle.  In this role, Piccolomini will serve on Marsh’s Executive Committee and will relocate to London. Previously CEO of Marsh Continental Europe, Piccolomini will continue to lead Continental Europe on an interim basis.

“This is an exciting time in our industry as the complexity of risks and the speed of change our clients face increase,” said Doyle. “Our new global structure and expanded executive team will better enable us to deliver unmatched innovation and value to our clients around the world.”

In connection with the announcement, Doyle made additional appointments to Marsh’s Executive Committee, including Martin South, President, US & Canada; and David Eslick, Chairman and CEO of Marsh & McLennan Agency.