KPMG has concerns as to whether the recommendations from the long-term guarantees assessment impact study will be mutually satisfactory to all parties, and hence whether the insurance industry will be saved from further delays to the Solvency II timeline.
RSA has renewed a contract to provide motor insurance to Motability Operations. The new deal takes effect from 1st October 2013 for an initial five years. The deal will be on a quota share arrangement with RSA retaining 20% of the premium exposure, ceding the balance to a Motability Operations owned captive
As civil unrest continues in Turkey, Willis is highlighting potential gaps in insurance cover among the repercussions of the unrest. “Turkey is in the midst of the biggest anti-government street protests since the AKP took power more than a decade ago," says Andrew van den Born, executive director in Willis’ political and trade credit risks division. "But after being elected to his third term two years ago with 50% of the vote, besides denting his image abroad and exposing the increasing polarisation of Turkish society, the last two weeks of protest is unlikely to have any immediate impact upon Erdogan’s government.”
AIG UK has today launched airside premises and contractors liability protection, offering clients limits of indemnity and up to US$50m of war and terrorism cover included as standard. Airports in the UK are seeing increasing passenger numbers and general air traffic resulting in increased demand for airside services.
A key milestone in the path to formal implementation of Solvency II, the EIOPA report on the findings and recommendations of the long-term guarantee assessment has been released. The European insurance industry has over E7 trillion assets under management and, in turn, is a significant funder of long term investment, so where the rules end up will have ramifications for the capital markets more broadly.
The worst European flood event in a decade extended into another week as the death toll rose to at least 23. The most significant damage was experienced in southern and northeastern Germany after the Elbe and Danube rivers (along with their tributaries) overflowed their banks. Elsewhere, floodwaters were receding in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Switzerland, Poland and Hungary. Also, severe flooding affected southern and eastern China, killing at least 15 people.
DAS has made a series of changes to its stand-alone commercial legal protection (CLP) product, including the removing the 51% prospects of success requirement from the employment and legal defence sections. There were 186,0000 employment tribunal cases in the year 2011 to 2012, and for many companies this is their single biggest concern, especially at a time when managing staff costs is critical.
Airmic delegates identified cyber crime and data privacy as the most concerning risk facing their business, according to research performed by ACE at Airmic this year. Environmental risk was rated a distant fourth place with only four per cent of attendees citing this as a top risk for their business.
Companies are finding it increasingly difficult to control their supply chains at a time when the cost of failure is higher than ever, according to Airmic. Case studies examined during the research included the grounding of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, Thailand floods, Nestlé's Kit Kat attacked by Greenpeace for using unsustainable supplies of palm oil, Mattel recall of millions of toys.
The possibility that claims will not be paid because of innocent non-disclosure of information when buying a policy is the top concern of corporate insurance buyers, according to a membership survey by Airmic. The list of ‘stay awake at night’ topics is dominated by claims-related issues, though product innovation and global compliance also feature highly.
In response to this week’s demonstrations running up to the G8 annual meeting, the Cross-sector Safety and Security Communications group (CSSC) has issued the following protective security points, which summarise guidance from a Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) publication on the same.
The way many companies report their risk management activity is opaque, lacking in detail and detached from overall corporate strategy, according to the risk management association Airmic and ICSA. The two organisations will urge the Financial Reporting Council to tighten up risk reporting when it updates the UK Corporate Governance Code later this year.
Airmic has produced a guide and model wording to raise awareness among its members and counteract the impact of basis clauses, which often lie buried in insurance contracts and can result in legitimate claims not being paid. Basis clauses have been criticised by the Law Commission and no longer apply in relation to consumer insurance.
SunGard Availability Services has signed a five year contract with Serco Group that will see the business continuity and managed services provider take responsibility for Serco’s UK IT infrastructure and undertake a technology transformation. Serco will also be moving a portion of its current estate to a virtualised, managed hosted model, using dedicated SunGard-managed platforms.
Two thirds of workers don’t receive enough information when their companies go through change such as layoffs, increasing the risk of misconduct, a report finds. Unsurprisingly, the report cited reducing pay as the most risky form of change, tripling the risk of bullying, discrimination and alcohol/drug abuse.
Governments around the world can reduce the human and economic impact of natural catastrophes by cooperating more closely with insurers, according to a report published today by insurance economics think tank, The Geneva Association. The report, Insurers’ contributions to disaster reduction, a series of case studies, examines examples of existing collaboration between insurers and governments around the world on disaster risk for best practices and areas where cooperation can deliver more human and economic benefit.
Marsh and CS STARS are adding a natural catastrophe risk map to its NAT CAT Pack. Launched in 2011, the NAT CAT Pack suite of services includes access to NATHAN, Munich Re’s GeoSpatial Solutions’ natural hazards risks database. The NAT CAT Risk Map expands upon traditional risk management information systems and enables users to record their global risk exposures on a single interactive map.
Several large UK cedants are reducing their spending on facultative reinsurance, according to Vanessa Macdonald-Smith, team leader at facultative reinsurance broker, Faber Global.
Central Europe has been inundated during the past several weeks with heavy and relentless rain, which has resulted in some of the worst floods seen in the area in more than 70 years. The floods have reached record levels, particularly in Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic. Switzerland, Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland are also affected.
A report published today highlights how insurance companies are concerned about what conduct risk really means in practice, including both direct and B2B and B2C operating models. There is increasing recognition that further work is necessary in establishing an underlying conduct risk framework, through which conduct risk is managed from board level to the rest of the company.
With the 2013 hurricane season, which officially runs from 1 June to 30 November, now underway, all the main forecasters are predicting another above-average season for windstorm activity. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is the latest to predict 13-20 named storms, of which 3-6 could become major (category 3+) hurricanes.
Schneider Electric has launched its new MGE Galaxy 300i UPS system.
Galaxy 300i is a 3-phase UPS product that is fully RoHS (Restriction of the use of Hazardous Substances) compliant. The power efficiency rates up to 90.5% with output transformer, higher than other UPS systems with similar features.
The winners of the 2013 Business Continuity Awards were announced last night at a Gala Dinner and ceremony hosted by comedian Marcus Brigstocke at the London Hilton on Park Lane. Among the winners, USAA, Camelot, HP, Zurich and the Cross-Sector Safety & Security Communications Partnership. Read on for a full list of the stars from the night...
Following news that UK anti-bribery legislation may be relaxed, legal experts are warning that the UK government may risk sending the wrong message to businesses. "The Bribery Act was unusual in that it was accompanied by statutory guidance on its interpretation. The legislation was always about the ability of business to operate profitably, but ethically by Western standards, in the global market place,” Mark Surguy, partner at global law firm Eversheds.
AIG in Europe has announced the launch of an enhanced oil and gas product offering increased limits and cover and stronger specialist loss control services. According Oil & Gas UK, a fresh wave of investment in the next few years will boost output in the sector from 1.5m barrels of oil a day to 2m. This surge in activity is being driven by a combination of higher oil prices and the extension of small-field tax allowances.
Drew Gibson has joined Atos Consulting Business Continuity and Resilience team from Canary Wharf Group, where he was business continuity and risk manager. Gibson joins the Atos team to lead the development of its crisis management offering and provide a range of planning, training and exercising for their clients.
New research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) shows that cyber crime costs its members around £785 million per year as they fall victim to fraud and online crime. The report shows that 41% of FSB members have been a victim of cyber crime in the last 12 months, putting the average cost at around £4,000 per business.
Beazley has hired Matthew Norris to join its growing European small business team. Norris joins Beazley from Hiscox, where he was global product head for technology and data risks.
24 bodies have been recovered and significant damage reported in Oklahoma City in the US after a tornado ripped through the city of Moore. Rescue operations are ongoing and the death toll is expected to in the coming hours as rescue teams expect to find people trapped under collapsed infrastructure. The tornado that affected Moore was classified as an EF-4 on the Enhanced Fujita scale.
Palisade has signed a contract to provide Halcrow with risk analysis software that plays a key role in reducing the effects of severe flooding. The construction company uses it to help water companies protect their critical assets, including as water treatment works and pumping stations. The software will also play a role in in quantifying the certainty with which forecasts can be made is an important element of the decision making process.
Oslo-based cyber security outfit, Norman Shark, has today released a report detailing a large and sophisticated cyber-attack infrastructure that they suggest originates from India. The attacks, conducted by private threat actors over a period of three years and still ongoing, showed no evidence of state-sponsorship but the primary purpose of the global command-and-control network appears to be intelligence gathering from a combination of national security targets and private sector companies.
A new report by UNISDR and PwC warns large multinationals’ dependencies on international supply chains, infrastructure and markets poses a systemic risk to ‘business as usual’. Ban Ki Moon has described economic losses from disasters as “out of control”, after a separate report was released (GAR13) showed mounting losses this century from catastrophic events topping US$2.5trn.
Aon eSolutions has today launched a guide for organisations considering using Risk Management Information Systems. The educational guide helps clients identify areas for consideration when thinking of investing in a RMIS and the value and potential return on investment. The guide draws on client feedback and Aon’s own research findings to highlight why organisations might invest in an RMIS.
According to a study by Munich Re, the global insurance market is set to grow strongly in the coming years. Munich Re’s Insurance Market Outlook 2013 arrives at the conclusion that growth rates will be especially strong in emerging countries. Growth in the reinsurance market will be slower than that in the primary insurance industry.
ACE Group is advising UK companies to prepare now for the increased liability risks they could face as they expand their exporting activities. ACE’s advice comes during UKTI’s Export Week and follows Prime Minister David Cameron’s assertion that if 100,000 more SMEs started selling overseas they could add £30 billion to the British economy and wipe out the trade deficit.
US-based risk management society, RIMS has commended Congressman Bennie G. Thompson, the Ranking Member of the Committee of Homeland Security, for introducing Fostering Resilience to Terrorism Act of 2013 that would extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) for 10 years. TRIA, legislation that protects organisations’ ability to purchase sufficient insurance to cover acts of terrorism, is set to expire on 31 December 2014.
Markel has launched a new flexible liability product for charities and community groups which will be available to brokers through the insurer’s e-trading system. The product is one of the few in the market which provides protection for policy holders for damages arising from abuse. With a minimum premium of £75 for public liability, the policy has been designed to provide simple, easy, modular options for cover that can be selected according to specific needs.
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has appointed James Tuplin as a technology risks underwriter within the financial lines team. He is based in the London office and reports to David Cable, head of UK commercial professional indemnity in the UK.
Four insurers of construction risks in the Lloyd’s market have joined forces to offer underwriting capacity sufficient to lead the largest construction risks in the world across all major onshore risk categories. The consortium comprises syndicates managed by Beazley, Canopius, Hardy and Talbot, all organisations with long experience of writing construction risks.They will be able to provide capacity up to US$166m per risk.
Markel International has appointed Bhavik Desai as an underwriter in its professional and financial risks division. Desai joins Markel after seven years at AIG, most recently as an underwriter and team leader within the professional indemnity division.
RiskSTOP and UK General Insurance Group have entered into a three year risk management partnership. Independent risk control service provider RiskSTOP will carry out on-site and questionnaire based surveys on behalf of UK General, as well as managing the implementation of risk improvements through its Assist service.
• 50% of businesses in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain expect it to be two years or more until economic recovery
• 66% plan to respond to the delayed recovery by expanding their operations into new countries over the next 5 years
• 29% view Asia as a key area for business expansion, 27% South America and 16% Africa
• 44% consider compliance with local regulations the biggest risk to their expansion
Alexander Ankel, currently CEO of Allianz Turkey, has been named as the new Regional CEO of Asia for Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, Allianz SE’s dedicated brand for corporate and specialty insurance customers. He will be based in Singapore, and starts in this new position on July 1, 2013
The aviation industry continues to defy expectations with claims and premiums for airline insurance lower in 2012 than in 2011, according to Aon. Lead hull and liability premiums were US $1.61bn in 2012, down from US $1.81bn in 2011. Major losses in 2012 totalled US$324m, nearly 40% less than the US$522m recorded in 2011. The overall estimated incurred claims total was US$924m down 20% against the US$1.13bn total claims in 2011.
Insurance cover for environmental losses is often incomplete or even non-existent without a dedicated environmental policy in place. That is the finding of IUA research into potential claims scenarios. It highlights the gaps in cover that exist when relying on standard public liability and property policies, or even public liability policies with regulatory clean up and contamination extensions.
The number of dawn raids conducted by the Financial Services Authority almost halved in one year, with only 11 raids conducted in 2012, down from 21 raids in 2011, says City law firm RPC. RPC says that the number of dawn raids peaked in 2009 (37 raids) and 2010 (36). During this period, the FSA made an explicit commitment to tackle insider trading and other forms of market abuse. Since 2010, the number of raids has fallen sharply.
Towers Watson has named Michael Murphy as managing director of its risk consulting and software (RCS) business in EMEA. Murphy has more than 20 years’ experience in the insurance industry in local and regional leadership roles in both insurance companies and consultancy. These roles have spanned life, non-life, health and reinsurance companies and as managing director, finance director, chief actuary and non-executive
Investment institutions are more acutely aware of the risks they face since the global financial crisis but many still need to improve the way those risks are communicated internally, according to new research by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The survey found that more than three-quarters of respondents said their organisation had a very risk-aware culture today. This compares with only 30% that made risk their highest priority in 2007.
Research from business advisory, Deloitte reveals 58% of 18-24 year olds are unwilling to use the technology. While some would consider telematics if their car insurance premiums were discounted, about a third (35%) of 18-24 year old car insurance buyers would not accept telematics at any discount. Almost all (92%) of 18-24 year old olds opposed cite intrusiveness as a reason for rejecting the technology.
Ecclesiastical Insurance has announced the appointment of Mark Hews as group chief executive officer. Hews joined Ecclesiastical in April 2009 as group chief financial officer and executive director of Ecclesiastical Insurance. Hews has over 20 years’ experience in the insurance industry and has undertaken a variety of roles on the boards of HSBC Life, M&S Life and Aviva Healthcare.
SunGard Availability Services and Workware Systems have announced the launch of WorkwareOne Mobile, a cloud-based platform for advanced, intelligence driven operational policing support. Developed to provide total situational awareness for police officers in the course of their normal operational duties, WorkwareOne uses existing police data for improved crime prevention.
SunGard Availability Services and Workware Systems have announced the launch of WorkwareOne Mobile, a cloud-based platform for advanced, intelligence driven operational policing support. Developed to provide total situational awareness for police officers in the course of their normal operational duties, WorkwareOne uses existing police data for improved crime prevention.
Broker Miller has renewed its contract with Phoenix for a further three years. The renewal represents a 50 per cent increase of services, based on the usage of Phoenix’s online back-up solution.
Comedian Marcus Brigstocke is to host the 2013 Business Continuity Awards Gala Dinner. The Business Continuity Awards recognise the endeavours of business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals. Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year's winners will be announced and awarded at the Gala Dinner on Thursday 30th May.
Xchanging has launched a service that provides end-to-end management of salvage sales for the insurance market. Xchanging Recovery Marketplace, or XRM, aims at improving efficiency by actively targeting and matching buyers and sellers through the delivery of a fully managed service covering all associated logistics of storage delivery transportation and payment.
Following a multi-million pound investment to enhance and upgrade its business continuity centre in Hamilton, Scotland; IT services and business continuity provider Phoenix is extending an open invitation to anyone interested in IT or business continuity, to visit its newly extended and improved centre on 30th April for educational presentations, guided tours of the facility and hands-on experience of the technology.
Lockton has partnered with Data Insurance Licensing to provide a new broad coverage, high indemnity policy that will indemnify organisations if their data is permanently lost. Developed by Data Insurance and backed by Lloyd’s, Lockton is introducing this data loss insurance policy to the north American market on 1st June. The also allows the insured to assign a value to the data that they choose to insure.
PageOne Communications and Swissphone have announced the launch of its first triple-resilient alerting solution. Building on the Responder two-way pager launched in 2011, the new version supports dual-frequency paging with SMS fall-back to provide the ultimate in flexibility and resilience for critical alerting applications. The new Responder pager is capable of operating on a local paging frequency as normal; and in the event of a local system failure or the phasing out of local transmitter legacy equipment, it will also receive messages on PageOne’s national wide-area paging network.
More small businesses than ever are facing the threat of losing confidential information through cyber attacks, according to research published today by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).
The 2013 Information Security Breaches Survey has shown that 87 per cent of small businesses across all sectors experienced a breach in the last year. This is up more than 10 per cent and cost small businesses up to 6 per cent of their turnover, when they could protect themselves for far less.
Risk leaders are struggling to identify and manage major risks, says a new report from Aon. Readiness for the top 10 risks dropped 7% from the 2011 survey and reported loss of income increased 14%. Of the 28 industries defined in the report, only three – pharma/biotech, non-aviation transportation manufacturing and agribusiness – reported the same or improved levels of readiness this year.
A deadly earthquake struck China’s Sichuan Province on Saturday morning, killing at least 157 people and injuring more than 5,700 others. An unknown number of residents remain listed as missing or trapped under rubble, according to reports from Aon Benfield’s Impact Forecasting team.
Towers Watson has bolstered its crisis management broking and consultancy operation with the appointment of three senior specialist insurance brokers.
Mark Steddon, based in London, has joined as the global head of terrorism and political violence brokerage.
The London Marathon is set to take place in London on Sunday 21 April amid heightened security. Following the two bomb explosions at the Boston Marathon in the US on 15 April, authorities in London have reviewed security arrangements for the London run and have increased police presence along the race route.
A committee of US senators has heard from the LMA that collaborative working between the commercial sector and the broad range of government agencies and the military has been a significant factor in the decline in piracy attacks off the coast of Somalia.The LMA’s head of underwriting Neil Smith told senators that the lessons of governmental cooperation learned in Somalia could well be applied to other piracy hotspots.
The Boston Marathon attack was the first high-profile successful act of terror in the US since 9/11, but one of the dozens of plots launched against the US homeland since then. The casualty toll stands at three fatalities, with 144 injured, 17 of whom are in critical condition. Most of the property damage appears to be within 10-20 feet of the explosions, and insured property losses are unlikely to exceed $1m. BI costs may be the larger source of insurance claims.
SunGard Availability Services has signed workplace recovery contracts with two global financial institutions in India, signalling its continued expansion into the country. Today’s announcement takes SunGard’s total available capacity to over 1,000 dedicated workplace recovery positions and 260 seats for syndicated recovery.
Utilities disruptions and traffic congestion persist amid ongoing rescue operations in the city of West, in the US state of Texas, following an earlier explosion at a fertiliser plant. Up to 40 people remain unaccounted for, and 160 others were injured in the accident at the plant of the West Fertilizer Company. The strength of the explosion affected as many as 50 residential properties, which were damaged and evacuated as a result.
One in three insurance risk executives worldwide are unhappy with existing links between risk management and their executive pay policies but have no plans to change the current approach, according to Towers Watson. Towers’ latest global enterprise risk management and insurance survey asked chief risk officers, chief financial officers and chief actuaries about the progress and development of ERM activity within their companies.
Investigators are searching for the individuals responsible for detonating two bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing at least three people, including an eight year old, and injuring scores of others. The scale of the attack, coupled with the fact there has been no claim of responsibility indicates that this was likely the work of an individual or a small group, according to Exclusive Analysis. The incident demonstrates that the individual or group responsible has achieved effective operational security and developed the capability to construct several small but effective IEDs.
Gallagher Heath has been awarded a place on the Insurance Services Framework (ISF) following a competitive tender process, led by the Government Procurement Service (GPS). The ISF was set up following extensive collaboration with public sector organisations and representatives from the insurance industry to provide an online platform through which public bodies can more quickly and cost-effectively procure insurance protection and additional support services.
Underwriting group Kiln has just completed its implementation of Fineos Claims across its London Market claims operation. Michael Kelly, CEO Fineos, said, “We are delighted to be supporting Kiln, one of the leaders at Lloyd's. The two teams have worked extremely well together. Furthermore, Kiln employees have been trained to use our Fineos Configuration Studio which will make them self-sufficient in addressing change requests.”
The Metropolitan Police Service, City of London Police and the BTP are finalising preparations for the policing operation for Baroness Thatcher’s funeral on 17th April, when extensive road closures and bus diversions in central London will be in place. There will be a range of security measures, in line with the current threat level. A mobile team of officers, called reserves, will be deployed ready to respond if needed to events anywhere in London.
The UK’s failure to capitalise on the commercialisation of its technology means it is no longer at the forefront for global technology research and innovation, a cornerstone for driving economic growth. As a result, British tech practitioners are upping sticks and heading across the pond to the US where funding is readily available from investors, willing to support R&D, production and commercialisation. This is according to Clive Mayne, managing partner, ExeTec Consulting.
KPMG has appointed Phil Smart as UK head of insurance. Mr Smart joined KPMG in 1991, and has been a partner for the past ten years. During this time, he has been client lead partner for a number of major international insurance and financial services groups.
William Hague has announced that a global centre for cybersecurity is to be opened at Oxford University. Under the proposal, the government will provide £1m to fund the centre for the next two years. The Global Centre for Cyber Security and Capacity Building will work to help countries develop plans to deal with cyber risk. Hague says the new centre will act as "a beacon of expertise" in the sector.
Cloud computing and communications company, Qubic, has launched a new fibre-to-the-cabinet service, Vitesse, providing a direct connection to the datacentre. Qubic delivers connectivity over a wires only, configurable service. This ensures that traffic to the hosted servers it provides is carried on an entirely private line, without connecting to the Internet.
Specialist insurer Markel International has gone live on Sequel’s Eclipse Underwriting software. Markel has rationalised and consolidated its many lines including historical acquisitions, Lloyd’s, companies and non-bureau business on to one system, supporting hundreds of users worldwide, running on Sequel’s software.
Xchanging has begun the roll out of free Wi-Fi access in the City of London. The first installation at 34 Leadenhall Street will be followed by installations at Lloyd’s and the London Underwriting centre later this year. Further locations will be added during 2013. Xchanging is also considering hosting free Wi-Fi in other UK insurance hub cities.
News in brief: Week to 5th April 2013, including news from SunGard Availability Services, RPC, AJ Gallagher, EIOPA, Kroll and PwC.
Arthur J Gallagher International announces today that Janice Deakin has been appointed UK commercial director, a new strategic role that spans its UK distribution, underwriting and affinity businesses. She will report directly to CEO David Ross and become a member of the AJGI executive committee.
Insurers are bracing themselves for a flurry of last-chance professional negligence claims relating to the build-up to the financial crisis, according to law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. RPC explains that normally claims for professional negligence have to be made within six years of the alleged negligence taking place. The window for the majority of claims relating to activity in 2007 (just ahead of the credit crunch) therefore closes this year.
Gallagher Heath has recruited Alan Sanderson and Peter Cooper to drive forward its expansion plans within UK schemes and affinities, having set its sights on doubling the division’s revenues to $100m by 2015.
The Financial Services Authority was today replaced by two new supervisors, the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The PRA works alongside the FCA creating a “twin peaks” regulatory structure in the UK. The FCA is responsible for promoting effective competition, ensuring that relevant markets function well, and for the conduct regulation of all financial services firms.
According to a survey among its data recovery customers, recovery provider Kroll Ontrack says that while 60% of respondents had a backup solution in place at the time of data loss, the backup was not current or operating properly. These findings provide key insight into the importance of diligently monitoring and verifying that a backup is successfully operating and capturing a current, accurate snapshot.
Jim Bichard has taken on the role of London Market Insurance leader at PwC. Bichard is a partner with 16 years’ experience at the firm including five years in their New York practice.
The Business Continuity Awards recognise the endeavours of business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals. Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year's winners will be announced and awarded at the Gala Dinner on Thursday 30th May 2013 – an evening that brings together industry leaders for a night of networking and celebration. This year's shortlist follows...
EIOPA today released four consultation papers providing the detail of its proposed interim measures guidelines, which it proposes should be adopted by national supervisors from 1 January 2014. The consultation papers cover governance, a forward-looking assessment by insurers of their own risks (based on the ORSA principles), internal model pre-application process and submission of information to national competent authorities.
SunGard Availability Services has today published a report suggesting that steady and sustained growth over recent years in managed services adoption has led to an improvement in the UK’s business availability practices. They believe organisations have made a shift in their approach to business continuity, building resilience into the business through investment in cloud and virtualisation technologies, as well as managed recovery programmes.
Lloyd’s has announced a profit of £2.77bn for 2012, marking a return to profit following last year’s loss of £516m, which was the costliest year on record for natural catastrophes. Speaking about the results, Lloyd’s CEO, Richard Ward said: “The Lloyd’s market has posted a strong result. This is despite experiencing one of the costliest natural catastrophes in history, Superstorm Sandy, and incurring net claims of £10bn.
The Ministry of Justice’s claims reforms, set to be implemented between 2 April and 31 July, will have a profound impact on the way in which organisations in England and Wales manage their insurance claims notification procedures. According to Marsh, organisations that fail to adhere to new timeframes stipulated by the reforms, or Pre-Action Protocols, run the risk of paying higher legal costs and insurance premiums as a result.
The European Commission today adopted a consultative paper that launches a public debate on how best to design a new international agreement to combat climate change. The Consultative Communication raises key questions and invites the views of stakeholders on the new agreement, which is to be completed by the end of 2015 and to apply from 2020.
A project to standardise the terms of engagement for marine surveyors and marine loss adjusters working on behalf of Lloyd’s and London market underwriters has been completed by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) and the Joint Marine Claims Committee (JMCC).
Xchanging has been appointed by Homecare Insurance, part of CPP Group, to provide business continuity and recovery solutions for its infrastructure. Under the three year contract, Xchanging will provide solutions to provide Homecare with stand-alone capability as part of its approach to risk management, prevention and recovery. This will include a hot-start business recovery centre, provided by Xchanging.
FERMA is calling on the European Parliament to ensure that all insurance buyers are entitled to a minimum European standard of disclosure in the revised Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD2). This is the view FERMA has strongly expressed in a position paper to the Parliamentary Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee which will consider the draft directive before it goes to Plenary for a final vote in July.
From 18th March until the end of April, in Phoenix’s 18 centres across the country, experts will be available to answer questions on a host of business continuity related matters, including business continuity management planning, recovering data in the cloud and workarea recovery. These local clinics are being offered free of charge during BCAW.
BIBA says that the fight is not over following the Financial Services Compensation Scheme’s (FSCS) recent announcement on an interim levy on insurance brokers. The FSCS has confirmed that it will be raising an interim levy of £16m from the general insurance intermediation sub-class (SB02) for the 2012/13 financial year.
Last year was the worst for IT services contract activity since 2002. This is according to research from Ovum, which shows performance in the three months to the end of December 2012 falling well below the levels seen in the same period of 2011, ensuring that annual IT services contract activity fell to its lowest level for 10 years, both in terms of total contract value (TCV) and deal volume.
The British weather continued to catch UK businesses by surprise in 2012, according to new research released by the Chartered Management Institute, British Standards Institution, the Business Continuity Institute and the Cabinet Office. Three in five firms suffered financially as a result, with managers estimating the average cost to their organisation in excess of £52,000, and some as high as £1m.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) has announced the appointment of Steve White, currently head of compliance and training, to the post of chief executive, with effect from 1 May 2013. BIBA chairman, Andy Homer, additionally announced that Graeme Trudgill, BIBA’s head of corporate affairs, will also be promoted to the main board of BIBA. He will take the post of executive director reporting to Steve White, also effective from 1 May 2013.
The DAS Group has announced the acquisition of Bristol based law firm, CW Law. CW Law currently employs over 60 staff and specialises in personal injury, employment and property disputes.
Beazley has selected Hazelwood Street Consultants to provide response services under its kidnap and ransom (K&R) insurance policy. Hazelwood Street has entered into an exclusive relationship with Beazley to support insured clients. The Beazley policy provides corporate and family cover supported by a suite of services from Hazelwood Street, including crisis planning and management, training, negotiation advice and trauma management.
Peak Re, the Hong Kong-based reinsurer focusing primarily on the Asia-Pacific market, has selected AIR’s catastrophe modelling solutions to manage its catastrophe risk.
The catastrophe modelling team at Aon Benfield has launched a suite of new scenario models to generate loss estimates for specific historic or hypothetical events. Loss estimates for events such as the storm surge by Superstorm Sandy, the 2011 Thailand floods, and the highest insured loss European windstorm Kyrill, can now be calculated to gauge the financial impact of their potential reoccurrence.
The Law Society has told the government that its proposals to increase the small claims limit in personal injury cases stem from propaganda, generated by insurers. Responding to a consultation on arrangements concerning the small claims limit, the Law Society said the insurance industry is lobbying the government into adopting a policy that will see genuine accident victims left without the benefit of legal advice.
A new UK Cyber Security Champion was announced yesterday at the Cyber Security Challenge UK Awards in Bristol. Stephen Miller, a 28 year old chemist from Hertfordshire beat thousands of registered candidates and successfully navigated several online and face-to-face competitions over the past year to claim the prize. Stephen currently works as a Lab Team Manager at a major pharmaceutical company overseeing the testing and manufacture of their clinical drugs. He has been playing the Challenge since it launched in 2010.
James Hastings has been appointed managing director of Markel’s professional and financial risks division. He replaces David Armes, who retired in December 2012 after more than 10 years with Markel.
Regulatory proceedings and investigations are increasingly affecting businesses on both sides of the Atlantic as companies are continuing to navigate a crowded field of regulatory issues and litigation. This is according to law firm Fulbright & Jaworski International’s latest Litigation Trends Survey, which suggests that the trend for increased regulatory investigations is showing no sign of abating.
Telefónica UK has become the first UK mobile operator to have achieved ISO 22301 across all of its operations from BSI. ISO 22301, which has evolved from the internationally recognised British Standard BS 25999, endorses a plan of management practices and preventive solutions to protect an organisation against unexpected disruptions which may affect ability of the company to operate.
With less than 10,000 lives lost worldwide, 2012 was the least deadly for natural disasters in the last 10 years, due largely to the lack of major events outside high-income countries with the infrastructure and resources to withstand their socio-economic impacts. However, new research from risk analysis company, Maplecroft reveals that resilience to major weather and seismic events is not improving in some of the world’s most important growth markets, leaving large sections of their populations and economies at ‘extreme risk.’
JLT has made a number of key new hires in its financial institutions team. Roger Maxted and John Greene join JLT as partners; Tracy Miller as insurance company industry specialist.
Miller has increased its presence in the French market with three senior reinsurance hires; Stéphane Nadjar, Eric Le Mercier and Emmanuel Figuereau.
David Bonehill, claims and risk services director at Ecclesiastical Insurance Group, has been appointed as the new chairman of the Claims Faculty board of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII).
Marsh has today launched its Insurance Maturity Model. The innovative model helps clients assess their current insurance activities against a best practice model in key areas such as governance; insurable and non-insurable risk identification, analysis and evaluation; cost of risk approach; risk reporting and monitoring; risk transfer resourcing; and the management of third party providers.
BIBA have approved a template with the Association of British Insurers which will make it easier to implement agreements between brokers and insurers. Discussions on standardising templates for Terms of Business Arrangements (TOBAs) took place at the Broker Insurer Forum, an ABI-BIBA group, and an agreement was reached on a generic format which can now be used by ABI members when issuing amended TOBAs to their broker partners.
The number of intensive on-site Arrow inspections to insurance businesses from the FSA has jumped 38% so far this year, with 47 visits in 2012 to (to September 30) compared to just 34 for the whole of 2011, according to law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain.
The Jackson reforms, due to take effect on the 1st April 2013, leave law firms at risk of professional negligence claims. Any CFA entered into prior to 1st April where ATE has not been purchased can potentially leave clients facing bankruptcy or law firms’ exposed to negligence claims. The new rules prohibit the recovery of ATE premiums for policies purchased on or after 1st April.
The Women’s Security Society (WSS) launched last night in the City of London. The WSS is a new and society comprised of women representing all interconnected security disciplines. The goal of the WSS is to encourage the advancement of women across all security platforms in the profession.
The founders and board members of the new society welcomed guests from diverse areas of the security world.
Recent innovations in the personal insurance market are set to influence the commercial insurance arena in coming years. This is according to new research conducted by Xuber, Xchanging’s insurance software business. Personal Insurance Trends for Commercial Insurance to Watch in 2013 - How Innovations in Personal Insurance will Inspire Commercial Insurance to Raise the Bar identifies the shifting expectations of consumers and the increased relative importance placed on non-price related factors such as response times and ease of access to data.
The European Parliament plenary meeting to consider the Omnibus 2 amendments to the Solvency II directive has been moved back to October. Whilst no explanation of the rationale for the delay has been announced, this delay will allow the results of the current impact study on the impact of Solvency II on products with long-term guarantees to be considered and resulting amendments to the legislation to be drafted.
Oil and gas firms globally are increasingly exposed to cyber threats as a result of converging technological, terrorism and political risks. Oil and gas firms with installations in politically sensitive geographies are more exposed to cyber attacks, given the potentially crippling nature of any ensuing disruption on national energy supplies.
The chancellor of the exchequer has today announced that Andrew Bailey, executive director, Bank of England and managing director, prudential business unit, Financial Services Authority, has been approved to become deputy governor at the Bank of England responsible for prudential regulation and the chief executive officer of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
The chancellor of the exchequer has today announced that Andrew Bailey, executive director, Bank of England and managing director, prudential business unit, Financial Services Authority, has been approved to become deputy governor at the Bank of England responsible for prudential regulation and the chief executive officer of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
BAE Systems and Vodafone Group have signed a deal to offer a range of communications security services. Part of BAE Systems' drive to grow its cyber and security arm, BAE Systems Detica, products will initially focused on smart phones and tablets. The first commercial element of the strategic partnership will be a new cloud-based mobile security solution, Vodafone Mobile Threat Manager.
Claims for flood and storm damage in 2012 cost insurers £1.19 billion, the highest annual figure since the £3 billion paid in 2007. During the wettest recorded year in England and Wales and second wettest in the UK, insurers handled 486,000 claims for flood and storm damage from businesses, homeowners and motorists. Insurers paid out £40m in business interruption payments.
The deadline for entries for the Business Continuity Awards has been extended to 28th February. The Business Continuity Awards recognise business continuity, security, resilience and risk professionals whose innovative strategies and industry savvy make them stand out above the rest.
Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year’s winners will be announced at a gala dinner and ceremony on Thursday 30th May at the Hilton on Park Lane in London – an evening that brings industry leaders together for a night of networking and celebration.
A meteor exploded today over the city of Chelyabinsk, in Russia's central Ural Mountains, injuring hundreds and causing damage to buildings in six cities. According to the Russian Academy of Sciences, the massive meteor weighed 10 tons and entered the earth’s atmosphere at a speed as high as 33,000 mph.
Professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal has launched a European cyber practice and appointed Wayne Grundy, formerly of Raytheon, as managing director. A&M has seen increasing demand from European companies for support in addressing cyber security issues, at a time when the EU is urging businesses to declare publicly when they have suffered serious cyber attacks.
Commenting on the latest developments in the horse meat scandal, Andrew Underwood, head of supply chain at KPMG, believes that a lack of consistency in the way produce is monitored makes it too easy to take advantage of gaps in the food supply chain: "Many companies use supply chains that revolve around a web of international partners, but these vast networks can bring additional risk."
Phoenix has signed a multi-million pound deal to deliver refreshed IT infrastructure and on-going IT services for automotive specialist Manheim’s UK operations. The agreement with Phoenix will see Manheim consolidate its UK IT infrastructure, multi-site hosting, backup and replication, management, monitoring and remote and onsite support for their European operations.
A National Audit Office review of the UK government’s strategy for cyber security indicates a concern over the lack of skills needed to fight the persistent threat of cyber crime. The NAO review identifies several additional challenges faced by the government in implanting its strategy.
Members and students of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) looking for quick, convenient access and the added benefits of up-to-date technology will now be able to study for their qualifications on their portable electronic devices as the CII launches study texts in ebook format.
Managing general agent Ascent Underwriting has launched new coverage for emerging cyber risks. The LUC-based MGA will be working with London Market brokers providing insurance products to clients on a worldwide basis and will specialise in writing coverage for non-tangible risk including cloud computing, data privacy, network interruption, professional liability and intellectual property perils.
A powerful winter storm brought significant snowfall, hurricane-force wind gusts and coastal flooding to the US Northeast and parts of eastern Canada on Friday and Saturday. At least six storm-related fatalities have been recorded. The ‘Nor’easter’ prompted states of emergency to be declared in six states; travel bans imposed.
Likely failure to agree a new cabinet will increase unrest and trigger army imposition of a technocrat government and fresh elections, according to risk analysts at Exclusive Analysis. In the likely event that there is no agreement, it predicts civil unrest will increase, reaching a level that cannot be contained by the police.
Revelations last month that beef products sold to some major UK companies contained horse meat have widened to include frozen food brand, Findus. The unfolding situation offers a clear warning to organisations that they have a duty to assure their supply chain for their end consumers.
Risk and claims management software provider CS Stars, has announced the appointment of Robert Bentley as president and CEO.
Despite its economic problems, the UK has seen improvement in its global risk ranking, according to Maplecroft's latestGlobal Risks Atlas. The UK has moved from the ‘medium’ to ‘low risk’ and up from 140th most at risk in 2012 to 157th, demonstrating that it is well placed to overcome global risks.
EU digital agenda lead, Neelie Kroes, warns that additional reporting could soon be in place for firms in the energy, transport, internet, banking and healthcare sectors. Launching the EU's Cybersecurity Strategy in Brussels Thursday, Kroes spoke of cyber incidents that disrupt millions and undermine trust in the online world.
Legal expenses insurer DAS has had its partnership contract renewed with Hiscox to provide personal and commercial legal expenses, as well as motor breakdown cover.
Uncertainty still surrounds the exact track this winter storm will take, but what is certain is that there is a high probability of snow accumulations of more than one foot over much of southern New England and parts of New York during the next 48 hours, AIR Worldwide warns.
Cross-party political support is needed to ensure that the UK gets on top of the flood risk the ABI said today at a flood summit organised by the Labour Party. Last year was the wettest on record in England, and only just short of being the wettest ever across the UK. Four of the five wettest years on record have been since 2000.
Almost half of IT professionals are deterred from keeping sensitive data in the cloud because of fear of government intervention and possible legal action, according to a survey carried out by Lieberman Software.
The recent announcement from PRA leaves much discretion for supervisors and gives rise to a potential risk of different standards and requirements between similar firms, PwC says. Consistency in the application of ICAS+, it adds, is key.
Sterling Insurance has launched a new subsidiary, Sterling Technologies, building on its already established IT service provision, serving such clients as Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group, RBS, CUNA Mutual and John Lewis for the last three years.
Today is the 10th annual Safer Internet Day, organised by international association, Insafe, each year to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children. This year’s theme focuses on online rights and responsibilities, designed to encourage users to 'connect with respect'.
The use of electronic claims files in the London company market is much more extensive than previously stated, an analysis by the IUA has revealed. New data shows that the percentage of new claims submitted each month electronically is now close to 90%, up from just over 70% at the beginning of 2012.
Dual has announced today the launch of a new international directors’ & officers’ liability (D&O) programme aimed at foreign companies listed on US securities markets through American depository receipts. The underwriter has partnered with Everest Re to offer this new capacity, and Scott Misson has been named chief underwriter for this business.
Retail banks across the globe will see IT spending grow 3.4%, reaching US$118.6bn in 2013, as CIOs focus on customer satisfaction and revenue growth. This is according to Ovum, which finds that European banks are lagging behind their North American and Asia-Pacific counterparts, with just 1.8% growth expected, compared with 3.3% and 5.1%, respectively. Ovum’s Business Trends report also reveals that credit risk management and data privacy will become key regulatory compliance drivers of IT spending in 2013.
Allianz Commercial has confirmed that Chris Hanks will retire from his role as general manager at the end of June 2013. Mr Hanks will be succeeded by Simon McGinn. Currently director, commercial broker markets, Mr McGinn will also join the Allianz UK management board.
The British Insurance Brokers' Association (BIBA) has launched its 2013 Manifesto Meeting the Growth Challenge in the House of Commons to an audience of ministers, MPs, lords, senior government officials and brokers. Jonathan Evans MP, chair of the all-party parliamentary group on insurance and financial services, hosted the reception.
DWF and Fishburns have completed their anticipated merger. The firm now has over 2,000 staff and 13 offices throughout the UK and Ireland.
The number of countries experiencing escalating political violence rose by 36% from a year ago, a trend that is likely to continue given the heightened risk of regime instability in a growing number of countries, according to a joint report from Marsh and Maplecroft.
An attack on the US Embassy in Ankara suggests that the capability of terrorist organisation the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) or a PKK splinter group to attack state and diplomatic assets has increased,” according to a special report released by risk forecasting firm Exclusive Analysis.
Legal changes affecting the UK motor insurance market will lead to an increase in mergers and acquisition (M&A) activity among brokers, law firms and claims management companies, according to Deloitte.
Research on the highly virulent H5N1 avian influenza viruses resumed last week after a year-long ban. With the controversial lifting of the moratorium, researchers will now try to increase the transmissibility or virulence of H5N1 to help prepare vaccines and other medical treatments in case of a pandemic.
Xchanging has today launched its enhanced Fees Direct offering, Fees Direct+. The new service is an enhanced fees offering which can be taken up both in the London and international insurance markets. Through a partnership with LSG, Fees Direct+ will enable delivery of a unique, integrated, end to end expert management processing solution. Clients can be up and running with the service within three weeks.
Many companies still do not devote sufficient attention to cyber risks, despite an increase in frequency, scope, and sophistication – and harsher penalties for lack of regulatory compliance and loss of sensitive data. This finding comes from research conducted in association with the Federation of European Risk Management Associations (FERMA).
A year after the publication of the European Commission's draft revision to data protection legislation, which includes fines of up to one million Euros or two per cent of annual revenue for a data breach, penalties appear to be having had little effect on most firms' approach to information security, according to Iron Mountain. It reckons that for the majority of companies, the threat of fines has little impact on their company’s data protection policies to protect sensitive information.
With the consumerisation of technology, including the surge in BYOD, IT auditors are facing increasing challenges. To help auditors with their increasing demands and responsibilities, ISACA, a nonprofit association serving 100,000 IT professionals in 180 countries, has developed more than 40 customisable IT audit/assurance programs.
The insurance market across EMEA is expected to remain broadly stable in 2013 despite the losses that impacted the market globally in 2012, according to Marsh. Organisations across EMEA with attractive risks and good loss histories may still be able to secure reductions on their insurance rates, continuing a trend recorded in the last six months of 2012, Marsh notes in its Insurance Market Report 2013.
NextiraOne has launched dedicated cloud and disaster recovery suites. Located in the UK, these suites will be based on the technology platforms of Cisco, NetApp, EMC and VMWare and will include managed services for these suites during their life cycle.
Phoenix has announced the launch of its cloud-to-cloud backup service, following its first customers roll-out in the UK. Salesforce.com has chosen to back up its customer data to its own secure data store, which allows them to dictate the precise terms and conditions of their back-up.
Following agreement of the terms of reference by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission, European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority has launched the long-term guarantee impact study, which will test the application of Solvency II to products with attaching long-term guarantees.
QBE has launched CreditFlex, a top up commercial credit insurance facility that operates above an existing, non-QBE, primary whole-turnover policy.
Reputation and loss of brand value remain top concerns of large UK companies according to the Allianz Risk Barometer 2013. The concern relates to the rise in popularity of social media, with phenomena such as viral messaging and re-tweeting allowing negative comments to spread globally, regardless of merit, within very short time frames.
Audit committee members are concerned about the quality of information that they receive on cyber security according to a new survey of some 1,800 audit committee members in 21 countries undertaken by KPMG’s Audit Committee Institute.
As regulators start to assess the impact of potential rules to align the treatment of insurance across Europe, Deloitte is highlighting the huge implications for annuity providers. The EC's Long Term Guarantee Assessment will test the impact of different approaches to how insurers set reserves and capital for products like annuities.
RSA has appointed Tony Chaudhry as its new European director for its global specialty lines business.
Zurich Insurance in Italy has completed its roll-out of BAE Systems Detica NetReveal OnDemand managed service for claims fraud prevention. This is the first deployment of Detica NetReveal in Italy and forms part of Zurich’s global implementation programme.
Xuber, Xchanging’s insurance software business, has launched Xuber Claims, the first release from the next-generation suite of commercial insurance products announced at the company’s recent re-launch. Xuber Claims comprises a fully-integrated claims management solution with embedded workflow to optimise, automate and measure each stage of the business process from first notification of loss through coverage verification to final settlement.
Typhon is launching a marine convoy escort service aimed at enabling ship operators to transit the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. The safety of convoying through dangerous waters has been long established, Typhon will be the first company for over two hundred years to privately offer a naval-grade service to the commercial market.
Aon Benfield has launched its new weather reinsurance product for adverse weather losses in the UK. Index-based WExcess, developed with Swiss Re and weather risk management firm CelsiusPro, is designed to help mitigate the financial losses incurred by insurers during severe weather events, such as the recent UK winters, which have been among the coldest in recent history.
Crossrail has rejected claims made by the Unite union that blacklisting has taken place on the Crossrail project. In a statement, it says the Consulting Association was closed down in 2009 following enforcement action by the Information Commissioner, well before the award of the first tunnelling and station contracts in December 2010.
Commenting on the Prime Minister’s speech from earlier today, Eric Galbraith, BIBA chief executive, said: “I agree it is the right time to have this debate given the significant changes and challenges in the EU over the years. We need a stronger voice in the EU decision making process given that policies have a direct impact on UK businesses and consumers. A good example of this is how the recent Test-Achats gender case impacted the insurance sector and consumers in the UK.
As forecast snow has fallen across much of central and northern Britain, bringing disruption in some areas. Met Office forecasters are expecting a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow over southwestern areas overnight and on Tuesday.
General insurers saw solid business volumes growth and volumes are expected to grow at an even stronger pace over the next quarter, according to the today's CBI/PwC Financial Services Survey. Meanwhile, life insurance respondents noted strong growth in business volumes and income values, lifting profitability.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has given a cautious welcome to the Financial Services Authority’s proposals for changes to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme funding model. The policy statement and consultation issued by the FSA means that two of BIBA’s key lobbying issues have been achieved. Brokers will no longer have cross subsidies with banks meaning they will not pay for financial failures in the banking sector.
A new report from Swiss Re shows that better risk management can secure future energy supplies and reduce the impact of climate change. The report provides a framework for decision-makers when it comes to questions of renewable energies, greenhouse gas emissions and how to adapt to climate change. It also looks at how insurance can enable development in the energy sector.
A series of reports published today by Ovum suggest that 2013 will see cloud computing continue to grow rapidly as it tackles the IT challenges of reducing costs and boosting innovation. In the 2013 Trends to Watch: Cloud Computing report, Laurent Lachal, senior analyst, Ovum Software notes: “It takes a lot of effort from vendors and enterprises to actually make it work, and they will succeed in making it work in 2013, both on their own and as part of increasingly complex ecosystems.”
With much of Britain braced for more snow this weekend, some of the lessons learned preparing for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games could be just as useful now, according to Deloitte's resilience team.
The Met Office is warning of the risk of disruption as heavy snow is forecast across many parts of the UK tomorrow, Friday. A band of snow will push into the west into Friday morning with parts of Wales, the west of England and later Northern Ireland particularly at risk of heavy falls of snow and blizzard conditions in strong winds. A red warning has been issued for upland parts of southern Wales where accumulations of 10 to 15 cm are expected. Businesses are advised to review continuity plans where necessary.
A number of foreigners including Americans, Japanese and Europeans have been taken hostage after a group of gunmen stormed a gas pumping station and its employee barracks in Amenas, Algeria before dawn on Wednesday.
‘Express kidnapping’ is on the rise in South and Central America. This form of crime generally involves people being abducted, robbed and then forced to withdraw money from a cash point or hand over their PIN details, according to risk consultancy red24.
BP has said in a statement that the Algerian army is attempting to take control of the hostage situation at it's Amenas site in Algeria. "The situation remains unclear and we continue to seek updates from the authorities," reads the statement. "Sadly, there have been some reports of casualties but we are still lacking any confirmed or reliable information. There are also reports of hostages being released or escaping...
Two people were killed and 12 injured when a helicopter collided with a crane in central London this morning. The wreckage fell into Wandsworth Road, in Vauxhall, setting fire to cars and buildings. Transport disruptions on Wandsworth Road are likely for several days as clean-up and investigations take place.
A new survey published by the Business Continuity Institute and the British Standards Institution shows concern over cyber attacks continues to mount. The survey also reveals that 71% see the use of the Internet for malicious attacks as a major trend that requires a business continuity response with 42% seeking to manage the prevalence and high adoption of Internet-dependent services, such as the cloud, within their preparedness activities.
Markel International has appointed Hannah Purves as its new claims director. Based in London, she will lead the company’s international claims team of more than 50 specialists.
Aon Benfield has issued a warning over the potential ramifications of a severe space weather event, as solar and geomagnetic activity is predicted to peak in the coming 12 months. Its new report Geomagnetic Storms reviews the potential threat and risk management implications. it argues geomagnetic storms and extreme solar weather are a realistic threat to three critical areas of modern infrastructure, including electrical power distribution, telecommunications and global satellite navigation.
A senior Lloyds executive is suing the British bank Lloyd's Banking group for £1 million in lost earnings, alleging that he was forced out of his post after blowing the whistle on "startling" failures in the bank's disaster recovery systems. In a submission to the Central London Employment Tribunal, Stephen Clements, claims that two-thirds of the bank's systems were not subject to resiliency tests, leaving "very serious gaps” in their ability to recover critical IT systems.
The Sri Lankan government’s decision to mandate the use of offshore armouries could potentially invalidate UK Private Maritime Security Companies (PMSC) insurance and affect their ability to win or retain security contracts from shipowners. According to Marsh, those most likely to be affected are UK PMSCs that breach the UK Government’s Export Control Order of 2008 (ECO), which controls the trade and export licensing of military and dual-use goods and regulates the use of third party floating armouries.
Recently retired Assistant Commissioner Frank Armstrong has been honoured with the Queen's Policing Medal for Distinguished Service. Mr Armstrong is also the latest judge to join the 2013 Business Continuity Awards panel. Mr Armstrong spent the first 18 years of his policing career with the Met Police before joining the City of London Police as Commander in December 2000.
The spread of violence and instability from Syria and Libya; increasing terrorism across key growth economies; the heightened risk of social unrest driving regime change; and resource nationalism, will be the key drivers of political risk for 2013, according to the fifth annual Political Risk Atlas, from risk analysis firm Maplecroft.
The world is more at risk as persistent economic weakness saps our ability to tackle environmental challenges, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks 2013 report. The report highlights wealth gaps followed by unsustainable government debt as the top two risks, in a survey of over 1,000 experts and industry leaders, which reflects a slightly more pessimistic outlook for the coming 10 years.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association has received Continuing Professional Development (CPD) accreditation from the Chartered Insurance Institute. BIBA members will now be able to receive CPD for reading BIBA’s regulation and technical updates, and attending its Compliance Forums.
For enterprises seeking to identify impacts that emerging technology trends can have on business continuity management, global IT association ISACA released a new white paper, which provides an overview of the impacts, benefits and opportunities of four emerging technologies as they relate to business continuity management: virtualisation, cloud computing, mobile devices and social networks.
Economic losses in 2012 make it the sixth-costliest natural disaster year on record since 1950, according to Aon Benfield’s soon to be released Annual Global Catastrophe report analysing global natural peril weather events. The report reveals that global natural disaster activity in 2012 produced 295 separate events that caused significant impacts to various parts of the world, with the United States sustaining nearly 90% of all global insured losses.
The FSA handed down a record-breaking £312 million in fines in 2012 (to December 19), smashing its previous record of £89 million (in 2010) by 251%, says City law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. RPC explains that the fines would have been much higher, but 71% of the businesses and individuals fined by the FSA received a discount for cooperating with the FSA. Without any discounts, the fines in 2012 would have amounted to £411m.
Lloyd’s of London has today announced its estimated net claims before tax from Superstorm Sandy are between $2bn and $2.5bn. The range of the claims estimate is consistent with insurance industry losses of between $20bn and $25bn. Lloyd's says it expects minimal impact on member capital and no impact on the Central Fund. As additional information emerges, Lloyd’s actual ultimate net claims from the event may vary from this preliminary estimate.
Business standards company BSI has published a new guidance standard to help organisations take practical steps towards mitigating risk and improving their business continuity management. ISO 22313 Societal Security – Business Continuity Management Systems – Guidance describes the steps businesses need to take in order to meet the requirements of ISO 22301.
Businesses in the capital expect to start hiring as normal again in the next six months, after a period of only taking on essential recruits in the first half of 2012, according to the latest CBI/KPMG London Business Survey. The Olympics brought a noticeable boost to employment which has now fallen back to more modest growth levels.
SunGard has identified ten trends in managed services and outsourcing for financial services companies in 2013. As cost pressures and regulatory requirements continue to challenge financial institutions’ and corporations’ ability to grow revenue, they are looking to outsourcing providers for additional managed services, according to Kalpesh Master, managing partner for managed services at SunGard.
The timetable for ending LIBOR quotes in some currencies and maturities was published today by the British Bankers' Association, following a month-long consultation with market users. The feedback statement summarises the findings of the consultation and sets out the BBA’s timescale for a phased discontinuation of certain LIBOR rates, in line with the sixth recommendation of the Wheatley Review.
The Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) and law firm Clyde & Co have jointly published new guidance on how insurance and reinsurance contracts may react in the event of a eurozone exit. The guidance contains a checklist of points for Lloyd’s managing agents to consider relating to governing law, jurisdiction, location of the parties, contract denomination and other matters and some example clauses.
SunGard Availability Services has achieved the ISO 27001:2005 standard for its enterprise-grade shared private cloud environment and managed services offering. The ISO 27001:2005 certification provides organisations with an internationally recognised, independent verification that the company is able to securely manage information security, retaining confidentiality, integrity and availability of all data.
The government today lifted the ban on hydrolic fracturing for shale gas or gas “fracking” in the UK, paving the way for access to a potentially abundant source of natural gas. This, in turn, could result in cheaper prices for consumers, as has been in the case in the US over the last five years.
With thousands of businesses already adversely affected by recent bad weather and flooding, new research released today by the UK’s largest commercial insurer, RSA suggests that small and medium-sized retailers are dangerously unprepared for interruptions to their Christmas trading period.
A rise in human rights violations from government crackdowns on public protest and political dissent is significantly increasing risks to business in ten of the world’s fastest growing economies, according to Maplecroft’s newly released Human Rights Risk Atlas 2013 (HRRA). The Atlas reveals growing socio-economic and political instability in the growth economies due to increasing levels of public dissent against governments and business interests.
CEO of Lockton International, Julian James has announced his plans to resign. Mike Hammond, chairman of Lockton’s international operations said in an announcement this morning that Mr James is to step down at the end of January 2013.
The Serious Fraud Office and the City of London Police today executed search warrants at three residential premises in Surrey (1) and Essex (2). Three men, aged 33, 41 and 47, have been arrested and taken to a London police station for interview in connection with the investigation into the manipulation of LIBOR. The men are all British nationals currently living in the United Kingdom.
HSBC is set to pay a record US$1.92bn fine to settle a money laundering probe carried out by US prosecutors. Europe's biggest bank has also reached agreement to achieve a global resolution with all other US government agencies that have investigated the firm's past conduct related to these issues and anticipates finalising an undertaking with the UK's FSA shortly.
Fluctuating prices will create chaotic chain reactions unless governments and businesses get to grips with a new world order defined by resource politics, according to a report released this morning by London-based think-tank Chatham House. Resources Futures shows that in an interconnected world, volatile prices pose far greater threats than physical scarcities.
Global business risk consultancy, Control Risks today published its annual report plotting global risk predictions for the coming year, and provides a detailed view from the markets that will matter most in 2013. The CRG report predicts significant challenges facing world leaders in a climate where economic uncertainty and political unrest have made holding power more problematic.
Airmic has issued a second Request for Proposal for companies interested in creating a global database of international insurance requirements, with a view to having the project completed by the end of 2014. Aon, Marsh and Willis are working with Airmic on the project, which is initially to provide a database to meet their own requirements. It is hoped it will eventually become a facility for the whole market.
As the Met Office’s provisional figures confirm that 2012 was the UK’s second wettest year on record, business advisory firm, Deloitte says the lack of a flood agreement with government is household insurers’ biggest concern.
Rolls-Royce says it has passed information to the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) relating to concerns about bribery and corruption involving intermediaries in overseas markets. This follows a request for information from the SFO about allegations of malpractice in Indonesia and China. Internal investigations at Rolls-Royce have themselves identified matters of concern in these markets.
The majority of businesses are unable to count the cost of a security breach, suggests new research commissioned by data security firm CipherCloud. According to the survey of over 300 business decision makers in UK companies across financial services, healthcare and government, almost 70% of respondents were unable to estimate the cost of a security breach. This was despite admitting they had concerns about security risks when it comes to putting their information in the cloud.
The first in a series of new nuclear and radioactive contamination exclusion clauses has been published by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA). The LMA’s Nuclear Exclusions Working Party, comprising representatives of both Lloyd’s and the London companies market, has developed six new clauses for treaty reinsurance business and these are available to the market via Lloyd’s Wordings Repository.
Xuber, Xchanging’s newly re-launched insurance software business, has been appointed by Marsh to provide its Brokasure software to more than 1100 users around the world. The 12-year contract will deliver a Saas model to eight Marsh UK business units, with implementation to be phased in over the next 24 months.
Take-up of supply chain insurance products in the UK is low because they do not meet the customer needs, according to a new report from Airmic. The association’s research found a perception among risk managers that dedicated supply chain insurance is too costly to justify, that collecting the relevant risk information is over-complex and there is a lack of clarity over when and under what circumstances policies will pay out.
RSA has appointed Dan Wilkinson as mid-market regions director.
Wilkinson has spent 23 years in insurance broking, most recently as CEO of Willis UK Retail.
Frustration within the insurance industry over the introduction of Solvency II is at an all-time high, according to new research from business and financial adviser Grant Thornton. A majority of the professionals polled now believe that the principles of Solvency II have been ‘ruined’ by its implementation while 89% believe that as currently envisaged it is ‘too complicated’.
After an extremely destructive and busy 2011 severe weather season, the United States’ 2012 tornado season may end as one of the most inactive seasons in history, according to the Storm Prediction Center. Through 26th November, the Storm Prediction Center has counted 885 tornadoes, far below the 26th November average of 1,265 and below the minimum value for November 26th of 920.
Mike Waterfield has been announced as the new British Damage Management
Association (BDMA) chairman, taking over from outgoing chairman, Don
Pringle, on 1st December.
Cabinet Minister Francis Maude today announced government plans to set up a ‘Cyber Reserve’ force to deal with the growing cyber threat. The force will be run by the Ministry of Defence and will allow the armed forces to “draw on the wider talent and skills of the nation in the cyber field.” Maude said that help was needed with “critical” work in combating online crime and promised efforts to make the UK “one of the most secure places in the world to do business in cyber space”.
Ensuring that your business is protected against adverse conditions is one way of illustrating an ability to continue on providing a service whatever the weather, and no less during the current wet weather and associated flooding, says FM Global.
The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) has today launched a new good practice guide to equality and diversity for members, employers and the insurance and financial services professions. The CII’s guidance includes useful tips, case studies and resources to help professionals, particularly those in smaller firms, go beyond the minimum requirements when managing diversity
Marsh has combined its Asia and Pacific regions and appointed a dedicated leader for a new Continental Europe, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and Turkey region.
SunGard Availability Services has today announced the introduction of SunGard Online, an on-demand public cloud computing platform. With this new service users pay only for resources that they use, and the secure online portal allows an autonomous approach to cloud management based on pre-defined packages.
The most likely solution to providing insurance coverage in high-flood risk-areas of the UK is the introduction of a non-profit risk pool, despite the government's recent refusal to provide a temporary overdraft facility to the industry's latest proposal, Fitch Ratings says. The expiry in June 2013 of the government and insurance industry's Statement of Principles (SoP) agreement to provide insurance in high flood-risk areas, while positive for the UK insurance industry, leaves households at risk.
Following the news that negotiations between insurers and MPs have broken down, JLT Speciality Limited today warns that although the Statement of Principles has only ever related to residential and SME business, the change in underwriting policy could well flow into commercial insurance.
As the insurance cost of the recent flooding looks set to reach £1bn, a study by Iron Mountain shows that although 40% of UK firms regard natural disaster as the top threat to information security, few have taken action to protect their data from flood and fire risk. Iron Mountain has prepared a practical checklist to help firms minimise the impact of a natural disaster and protect their important information assets.
Active Risk today announced the global release of ARM 6, which aims to further engage employees in the risk management process, visualise connections between risks, and graphically report risks more effectively. ARM 6 addresses risk management needs at all levels of the business, from individual projects and programmes through to the enterprise level.
For the past seven days, much of the UK has experienced torrential rain resulting in flooding and widespread disruption. As conditions look set to continue, business continuity and managed IT services provider, Phoenix has been on hand to assist many of its 2,000 customers in keeping their business running.
In 2013, insurers will face an unprecedented level of indirect tax changes in Europe, intensifying the challenge of maintaining tax compliance. Says chief executive of FiscalReps, Mike Stalley: “Since the start of the financial crisis we have been warning insurers that European governments would increase their focus on indirect taxation to fund budget shortfalls. Now the promised changes are upon us and in the coming year we will see significant insurance premium tax and parafiscal tax changes right across the continent.
Since Sandy made landfall as a post-tropical cyclone on 29th October 2012, in southern New Jersey, catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide has been analysing the storm’s characteristics and impacts. Informed by the latest available information on surge height and extent from the USGS, surface wind speed observation data, and findings from AIR’s post-disaster survey teams, AIR now estimates that insured losses from Sandy will be between US$16 and 22 billion.
The ABI has called for the government to commit to a joint solution to ensure long term affordable flood insurance for high-risk households, describing the current state of talks aimed at reaching an agreement as being at an impasse. This follows the government’s refusal to consider providing a temporary overdraft facility to a proposed not-for-profit special insurance fund for 200,000 high-risk households which will otherwise struggle to get affordable household insurance when the current arrangements come to an end next year.
Whistleblowers from the UK were responsible for almost one in four overseas tip-offs to the US Securities and Exchange Commission in the last US fiscal year, according to analysis from business advisory Kroll. The SEC made its first payment to a whistleblower under the Dodd-Frank Act in August this year, releasing around US$50,000 to an individual who helped an investigation that resulted in more than US$1m in sanctions. Kroll says that over the last 12 months almost one in five (18%) of its investigations were prompted by a whistleblower. In 60% of these investigations the original allegations were upheld.
The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) has called for government to make serious injuries and deaths from work-related road traffic accidents reportable under RIDDOR. According to latest provisional figures from the Department of Transport, in the year ending June 2012, 24,870 people are estimated to have been killed or seriously injured on the roads in the UK. In 2010 the government estimated that 24% of serious injuries, and 30% of road deaths could be linked to work-related road traffic accidents.
Specialist lines underwriting agency, CFC has launched a new standalone terrorism policy, available across the US.
New analytics solutions, multichannel metrics, and better collaboration tools will be crucial in 2013, as enterprises feel the pressure to understand and pre-empt the needs from the always-connected customer, says Ovum. Vendors will need to step up and add these capabilities fast, or else risk losing business.According to Ovum’s report, social media response teams will move into the contact centre, driving the need for better social media management tools, and the global analyst firm forecasts high growth (21% CAGR) for social media monitoring within the customer service function in the next five years.
Independent think tank Reform, has today published a report on demographic change, warning of the risks associated with global ageing. Global ageing presents a dangerous combination of dwindling taxation revenue and burgeoning health and social care costs.
PageOne Communications has won a contract with Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT) to provide them with its Responder Smartphone App for BlackBerry, as part of a major upgrade of its emergency response facilities. Serving a population of around 700,000, BHRUT is one of the largest acute hospital trusts in England and operates across two main sites at Queen’s and King George hospitals.
A study into the psychology and risk behaviours amongst British entrepreneurs has found that they demonstrate a far more prudent and risk-averse attitude than the general public. The study, carried out by AXA and Psychological Consultancy Limited, in conjunction with the Association of Business Psychologists, found that small business owners were far more likely to maintain wary, prudent and deliberate (calculated) traits than the general population.
The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) is launching the latest of its four New Generation Groups to help inspire new industry thinking and develop future leaders. General insurance professionals representing broking, claims, underwriting and the London Market are collaborating on ways to improve their sectors in the second year of the New Generation Groups initiative, run by the CII Faculties.
The Association of Mutual Insurers and Insurance Cooperatives in Europe (AMICE) has welcomed the European Commission’s study on the current situation and prospects of mutuals in Europe. The study provides an extensive overview of the role that mutuals play in Europe, of the legal frameworks in the 30 countries of the EU and the EEA, and of challenges and barriers that mutuals face in their operations.
LOCOG and Skanska were among the winners at the 2012 Risk Management Awards. The event, now into its third year, was held at the Lancaster London Hotel, Hyde Park. The Awards, hosted by comedian Miles Jupp were once again a fantastic night of celebration, attended by the sector’s finest ambassadors. A full review of the awards will appear in the December issue of CIR Magazine, but for now, a preview of the winners…
PageOne Communications has today launched its Responder smartphone app for BlackBerry, Apple iOS and Android devices. The Responder app extends two-way paging’s core alerting features to smartphone to provide a separate secure messaging channel. With pop-up and audible alerting, a separate inbox and two-way reply options, the app aims to convey critical and real-time operational and emergency messages.
New analysis by Legal & General, using Department for Work and Pensions statistics, has shown that over one million people are claiming benefits because of mental and behavioural disorders, an increase of more than 25% from ten years earlier. Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) and Incapacity Benefit (IB) are the government’s sickness benefits that are paid to people who cannot work because of ill-health or disability.
Damage from storm surge and flooding caused by Superstorm Sandy is widespread and extensive, but there is only minor damage to buildings from direct wind, according to a report released today by Willis Re. After Sandy’s landfall, the Willis Re Catastrophe Management Services team spent four days in affected areas assessing the damage caused by wind, storm surge and flooding.
American International Group has announced today that AIG is to return as its global property casualty business brand in most of its locations. As part of the rebrand, AIG has also introduced a new brand promise: Bring on tomorrow. “AIG as a global insurance brand is back,” said AIG president and CEO Robert H. Benmosche.
Bluefin is to be the first broker to white-label Lorega 10, the recently launched affordable loss recovery Insurance product for smaller SMEs. Branded as Bluefin Response, the product will be offered by all of the broker’s commercial branches to SME clients with underlying insurance premiums below £2,500.
A new scheme that will provide access to companies certified to respond effectively to the consequences of cyber security attacks has been launched today by CESG, the Information Assurance arm of GCHQ, and the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI). The Cyber Incident Response scheme has been designed for organisations requiring assistance after a cyber security incident. Primarily aimed at the public sector and organisations forming part of the UK’s critical national infrastructure, the service can also be extended to the private sector.
A new report from SunGard identifies the key trends set to transform the financial services industry in Europe, which, the company's head of strategy, capital markets, Peter Banham, believes is on the cusp of change: “The European financial services industry is at a crossroads. Potential new regulations coming onto the statute books are causing institutions of all types to make fundamental changes to their business models.
Dual has formed a new division to underwrite specialty liability business.
The division will be led by John Murphy, as managing director. Senior underwriters Glenn Marshall and Andrew Pooley also join the team.
Murphy, once he completes his notice period, will report into Russell Kilpatrick, executive chairman of Dual's UK operations.
A new study from Deloitte has revealed that over 90% of businesses want to see a cultural shift in the way they comply with regulations. Over 60% of companies surveyed said that is an area that they plan to focus on in the next 12 months. In recent years the UK has seen the introduction of enhanced regulations, such as the Bribery Act 2010, and a rapid rise in action being taken against firms under existing regulations like competition law.
Reinsurance broker UIB has launched a Special Risks division which will provide bespoke insurance solutions for a range of business classes. Charles O'Sullivan has been hired as managing director and Karen Shelley as operations director.
The Business Continuity Awards are open for entries. As in previous years, this year’s criteria has been adjusted to reflect change in the sector. Judged by an independent panel of experts for exceptional performance, service and results in this dynamic industry, this year’s winners will be honoured and awarded at a gala dinner and ceremony on Thursday 30th May at the Hilton on Park Lane in London – an evening that brings industry leaders together for a night of networking and celebration.
The situation in New York and New Jersey continues to evolve in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. According to the Department of Energy, more homes and businesses lost power during Sandy than any other storm in history, at over eight million. As of 6pm EST on Wednesday, 28% have been restored. Mandatory evacuations are still in place in NYC, and across the Hudson River in New Jersey.
Catastrophic acts of violence, mining strike contagion, unexpected “perfect storms” and a nation paralysed by cyber terrorism are among the scariest risks facing the insurance industry this Halloween, according to WillisWire, the broker's blog.
Whistleblowing cases reported to the Financial Services Authority have increased by 276 per cent in four years, according to information obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by Kroll. The investigations firm found that between June 2011 and May 2012 the FSA received 3,733 contacts to its whistleblowing helpline. This is a 189 per cent increase on the 1,293 calls to the helpline in the same period three years earlier.
Catastrophe modelling firm AIR Worldwide estimates that insured losses from Hurricane Sandy to onshore properties in the US will be between US$7 and US$15 billion. AIR estimates include wind and storm surge damage to onshore residential, commercial and industrial properties and their contents, automobiles, and time element coverage (additional living expenses for residential properties and business interruption for commercial properties).
Around 8pm local time on Monday, extra-tropical cyclone Sandy made landfall along the coast of southern New Jersey. According to the National Hurricane Center (NHC) the center of Sandy tracked around five miles southwest of Atlantic City, New Jersey and around 40 miles northeast of Cape May, New Jersey. The NHC reported maximum sustained winds of 80 mph at landfall and that the system had become extra-tropical within the hour prior to landfall.
The US Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency announced that federal disaster aid has been made available to the State of New York and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the area affected by Hurricane Sandy beginning on October 27, 2012. The President's action makes federal funding available to affected individuals in Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Richmond, Suffolk, and Queens counties.
Hurricane Sandy could cost insurers between US$5 billion and US$10 billion, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. Bloomberg reports that the hurricane’s toll is poised to top US$20 billion worth of “economic damage”.
Organisations need to fundamentally shift their approach to information security in order to meet the threats presented by existing and emerging technologies according to Ernst & Young’s 15th Global Information Security Survey 2012 results released today. Their report is based on responses from over 1,850 CIOs, CISOs and other information security executives in 64 countries.
RMS reports say the current forecast has Hurricane Sandy making landfall in the US along the southern/central New Jersey coastline in around 24 hours time, early on Tuesday (UTC), October 30 as a Category 1 extra-tropical cyclone, having transitioned just prior to landfall.
As it approaches landfall along the Eastern Seaboard of the United States, 'Frankenstorm', as it has been dubbed, is expected to cause a huge storm surge. Storm surges happen when the sea is whipped up by strong winds and high tides.
The latest bulletin from cat modelling firm RMS, reports that at 14:00 UTC Hurricane Sandy had maximum sustained winds of 90 mph. Sandy is an extremely large storm, one of the largest ever recorded in the Atlantic and the impacts are expected to be far reaching. Warnings of hurricane and tropical storm force winds, a dangerous storm surge, heavy rain and heavy snow are in place across a large portion of the US and a state of emergency has been declared in nine states.
Continued economic pressure will force the insurance industry to take a more innovative approach to the role technology plays in their decision-making and operations, according to a new report from Ovum. A focus on mobile solutions, advanced analytics, and near-realtime systems will be key.
Fitch Ratings anticipates losses related to Sandy will be largely borne by primary insurers, but estimates remain uncertain.
Hiscox has appointed Dr Richard Dixon as group head of catastrophe research. Richard Dixon, who reports to Rob Caton, obtained a PhD in Meteorology from Reading University in 1999, studying the processes that lead to severe European windstorms.
More than £17bn of premium income was written by the company market in London during 2011, a new statistical analysis by the International Underwriting Association has revealed. And a further £5bn was written elsewhere, but controlled by London market offices. The IUA’s London Company Market Statistics Report has, for the first time, highlighted the large amount of wholesale and commercial business written by extensive networks of UK and overseas agents and branches, but governed by London companies.
More than £17bn of premium income was written by the company market in London during 2011, a new statistical analysis by the International Underwriting Association has revealed. And a further £5bn was written elsewhere, but controlled by London market offices. The IUA’s London Company Market Statistics Report has, for the first time, highlighted the large amount of wholesale and commercial business written by extensive networks of UK and overseas agents and branches, but governed by London companies.
Cooper Gay Swett & Crawford has announced that it has agreed terms with Lightyear Capital and institutional co-investors for a "substantial investment" into the CGSC Group.
Alarm is endorsing a range of courses to provide members with assurance on the quality and relevance of course content to the Alarm Core Competencies. The association's strategic objectives are focused on the professional development needs of its members and on raising the professional standards, and standing, of public service risk managers.
While 57% of insurers across Europe think they are on track to comply with Solvency II by January 2014, readiness varies significantly country by country, according to a survey of 160 large insurance companies across Europe carried out by Ernst & Young. Seventy to ninety per cent of British, Dutch, Greek, Polish and Spanish insurers (self-assessed) expect to be ready to comply before 1 January 2014; whereas 60% to 70% of Belgian, French, German and Italian insurers won’t be ready until after 1 January 2014.
RFIB has appointed Lisa Siggery as risk and compliance director. Siggery was previously group risk officer at Towergate Insurance; Solvency II director and head of risk and compliance at IAG (UK)
Too many staff in organisations across the UK are posting comments online about business activity, with their actions posing a major threat to client and company confidentiality, warns KPMG's head of cyber response. In a speech to delegates at a CIIA conference today, Martin Jordan warned that companies adopting a laissez-faire approach to employee social media activity may be exposing themselves to unnecessary high levels of risk.
The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) has welcomed further clarification from the Financial Services Authority (FSA) on the transition to the new regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
The FSA’s paper Journey to the FCA provides long-awaited and welcome detail on the important changes that will impact members when the FCA becomes effective in early 2013.
Eric Galbraith, chief executive of the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA), will step down next year after nearly 10 years leading the association. Appointed chief executive in 2003, Galbraith has driven forward the representation and lobbying in Europe and with the UK government and regulators. He led the merger between BIBA and the IIB and has instigated initiatives such as the strategic review and member campaigns on major broker issues.
The challenge for the new FCA will be to regulate in a way that promotes and produces better outcomes for the public, says the CII. Following today’s launch of the FSA paper Journey to the FCA, David Thomson, director of policy and public affairs at the CII, said that while there is no doubt that the new FCA will be a tough, pre-emptive and interventionist regulator, the FCA must avoid increasing the complexity of regulation for the industry.
A new ISO standard has been launched to help ensure safety of online transactions and personal information exchanged over the Internet. ISO/IEC 27032:2012 Information technology – Security techniques – Guidelines for Cybersecurity is also intended to protect computers when browsing
The identity frauds recorded by the private and public sector members of CIFAS – the UK's Fraud Prevention Service during the first three quarters of 2012 suggest that the Internet is the key enabler. Among the key findings are that 83% of the 95,060 identity frauds recorded during the first nine months of 2012 were attempted or carried out online. This is up from 71% during the same period in 2011.
The cost of property and business interruption cover for UK companies has remained stable over the past year, despite the big losses sustained by insurers in 2011. The third Airmic Property Damage and Business Interruption survey found that those respondents who had experienced rate increases were offset by those reporting decreases. Forty per cent reported no change in their rates.
Commercial insurer NIG has won exclusive rights to underwrite the core commercial insurance business of carbon-neutral insurance broker Insure Green. Insure Green brokers a range of commercial insurance products with a focus on environmental best practice. The new relationship will see NIG replace an incumbent provider to become the chosen single carrier on all core commercial classes: property, casualty and motor.
Cyber security agency, ENISA and the European Commission have published their first annual report on cyber security incidents, containing an analysis of incidents in 2011. Incidents affecting mobile telephony or mobile Internet affected most users. Natural phenomena including storms, floods and heavy snow have a big impact on the power supply of providers. Natural phenomena cause long lasting incidents, around 45 hours on average.
Lorega has launched two new products designed to provide SMEs with fast access to expert loss adjusters following a potentially devastating loss. Industry estimates indicate that 80% of SMEs suffering a major insurance loss never recover, highlighting the need for smaller business to have access to high-level claims expertise. Both new offerings have been created for smaller commercial clients with underlying insurance premiums below £2,500.
The Risk Management Awards Gala Dinner is just five weeks away.
The evening, which takes place on 14 November at the Lancaster London Hotel in Hyde Park, starts with a champagne reception followed by a three-course dinner with wine. This year's ceremony is hosted by comedian Miles Jupp.
This year's finalists are...
New research by Kroll Ontrack suggests that one in eight (12% or 3.1 million) of the UK’s working population have unintentionally lost work data from their work device within the last 12 months, either through malfunction or corruption.
The global power industry continues to see a steady rise in the number of large insured claims since 2005, putting pressure on both the supply of global power at a time of rising demand and on the future of the industry itself. So says a report, The Impact of Large Losses in the Global Power Industry, published today by Marsh. The report reveals that since 2005, insurers have been involved in settling at least one large power claim annually in excess of US$2m.
RSA has appointed Corentin Maurice as European liability leader within its global specialty lines business. Taking up this new role in December, Maurice will work with the insurer’s liability underwriting teams across Europe to define the underwriting strategy for the region and support each country in growing its liability book.
Cooper Gay & Co is offering a free crisis management and business continuity consultation to its terrorism and political risks policy holders globally. The new service is being made available through a joint initiative with Security Exchange, a risk management consultancy specialising in crisis management and business continuity.
Rob Cage has been hired as chief underwriting officer for Travelers in Europe. Cage, who has over 30 years’ experience in the insurance industry, will report to Travelers Europe CEO, Sean Genden.
A report on risk in the mining sector highlights how expatriates in the mining and NGO sectors are highly exposed to risks of kidnap and collateral harm by Islamist groups in northern Mali. Burkina Faso is highly likely to be among countries on target for opportunistic, pre-emptive or retaliatory attacks by Islamist groups occupying northern Mali, given Burkina Faso's support for what is likely to be imminent ECOWAS military intervention in Mali.
Miller has opened an office in Paris. Pierre Guntzberger is to lead the new office.
RSA and Groupama Insurances have signed a bilateral agreement to help speed up the payment process and keep costs to a minimum.
Cloud computing continues to have a significant impact on the way enterprises operate, and companies are increasingly migrating to the cloud as a result of its value. But security and data privacy concerns are critical issues to consider before adopting cloud-computing services. Security Considerations for Cloud Computing, a new book from IT association ISACA, presents practical guidance for IT and business professionals to help them securely move to the cloud.
Travelers has appointed Matthew Wilson as chief operating officer, Europe. Wilson is based in London and reports to CEO Sean Genden, who previously held the role of COO until his promotion in 2011.
Fitch Ratings has maintained the French non-life insurance sector's outlook at stable, indicating that a majority of French non-life insurer ratings are likely to be affirmed over the next 12-24 months. Pricing conditions and claims experience have continued showing signs of improvement, as French non-life insurers experienced recovery in their technical results in 2011-2012.
SunGard Availability Services has announced a partnership with Regus, which significantly expands its workplace recovery presence. The deal is comparable to growing SunGard’s portfolio of workplace facilities by 2,000% through a network of almost 1,300 business centres located in more than 550 cities across 97 countries, with SunGard managing customer contracts.
A flood mapping service has been launched on the Environment Agency's website, as rising waters continue to blight many parts of the country. FloodAlerts takes live data from the Environment Agency's nationwide network of monitoring stations and overlays it on detailed Microsoft Bing maps. A specially tailored version of the service has now been embedded in the EA website, presenting up-to-date information on water levels, updated every 15 minutes.
Following a BSI audit, Vodafone UK has been awarded the new international certification in Business Continuity Management, ISO22301.To achieve the new ISO22301 standard Vodafone had to demonstrate the highest levels of business continuity management for both its mobile networks and its customer service and support operations.
Fitch Ratings says in a new report that its rating outlook for the German non-life insurance sector remains stable. The agency considers German non-life companies to be well prepared to meet the sector's current challenges and does not foresee a significant number of rating changes over the next 12-24 months. The ratings agency says it expects underwriting profitability to improve in 2012 and 2013 and the sector to report a net combined ratio of 98% and 97% respectively. This compares favourably to 2010 and 2011.
Companies across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) are buying higher levels of liability insurance as fears increase over possible claims during the economic downturn, according to Marsh.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has today, Wednesday 26th September, urged health workers to report any patient with acute respiratory infection who may have travelled to Saudi Arabia or Qatar and been exposed to a new Sars-like virus. A small number of other severe respiratory cases that have been reported in the Middle East since July are currently being reviewed by the WHO to see whether they might have been caused by the new virus, including one fatal case in the UK.
Lloyd’s has announced a profit of £1.53bn (US$2.4bn) for the six-month period ending 30 June 2012. The result follows a benign first half of 2012 for natural catastrophes for the insurance industry, one which saw no major claims, and which marks a return to profit after the second most expensive year on record for the insurance industry in 2011.
Towers Watson has announced the release of a new pricing decision support solution. The new platform is designed around its Radar Base solution, which provides a modelling and reporting environment for a broad range of activities, from portfolio monitoring, competitor rate analysis and developing business plans through to detailed rate-setting models for individual insurance products.
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has appointed Henning Haagen as global head of aviation EMEA & Asia-Pacific. From January 2013, Haagen will assume the role from Florian Karner who has managed this aviation team for Allianz since 2006 and who is leaving AGCS to take up a new leadership role in general insurance broking in Monte Carlo.
Autumn makes its presence felt in the UK with persistent downpours and reports of torrential rain ahead, expected to cause flooding up and down the country later today. Periods of heavy rain, including some torrential downpours, are likely to occur across east Wales, the West Midlands, West Country and into central southern England. Businesses should be prepared for an increased risk of both surface water and river flooding.
Liberty and Barbican are to join Arch, Hiscox and MSIG as capacity providers for Dual's global financial lines portfolio. It has appointed Beach & Associates as broker on the its global financial lines portfolio.
Xchanging and Deutsche Bank have launched the pilot phase of the new global (re)insurance and accounting net settlement service, Netsett. Netsett is Xchanging’s new global initiative that uses structured data to enable organisations to exchange and settle accounting information. Xchanging believes Netsett will transform the accounting and settlement processes of the global insurance market.
Chartis is partnering with STA International to offer its trade credit policyholders a service that will help to accelerate debt recovery, reduce shortfalls in cash flow and minimise business disruption. The current difficult trading environment has resulted in a persistently high number of companies entering into administration or insolvency since the onset of the global financial crisis.
The rise in cloud adoption means that as more critical elements of the IT mix transition to the cloud, companies need to take even greater care when selecting a vendor and service provider, ensuring that the service level agreements they sign up for are clearly defined.
An increasing trend for bundling risk across multiple territories is reducing transparency and increasing reinsurers’ exposure to surprise financial shocks, according to a major new study Beyond Borders: Charting the Changing Global Reinsurance Landscape. The report, published following a three year study commissioned by the IICI, also calls for reinsurance underwriters not to be seduced into an over reliance on models, which pose a threat to the ‘deep knowledge and judgement on which their evaluation of risk is based’.
Piracy risk in Somalia is here to stay, even as the country undergoes its most significant political transition since the fall of the Siad Barre regime, according to analyst Tim Holt, head of intelligence at Special Contingency Risks (SCR) at the Willis Group.
Legal & General has launched a campaign aimed at highlighting how stress in the workplace is affecting financial services. The HSE's Labour Force Survey estimates that 10.8 million working days were lost in 2010/11 due to mental health issues. Work-related stress was the most common health problem for calling the government’s pilot Occupational Health Advice Line yet, only 17% of employers have any form of stress management advice and support in place.
XL Group is to open a new office in Lyon, and has appointed of Auberi Etienne and Clotilde Bartok to support the the team there. Etienne has been appointed as senior casualty underwriter, middle market. He has over 20 years’ experience in the insurance industry and joined XL Group from Hiscox, where, for the past four years, he was regional director for South-East France. He previously held various positions in the casualty departments at AIG Europe and Zurich Insurance, with responsibilities in the Rhône-Alpes region.
Director-general of the Association of British Insurers, Otto Thoresen, warned today of the need to avoid a “predator-prey” relationship between the insurance industry and the incoming Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Speaking at an ABI conference on regulation, Thoresen called on government to mandate that the work of the incoming FCA is aligned to the wider needs of society, such as getting an ageing population saving for their retirement.
Fitch Ratings says that the Italian insurance sector's rating outlook remains negative, indicating that most Italian life insurer ratings could be downgraded over the next 12-24 months. Fitch's outlook factors in the expectation that the eurozone debt crisis, despite showing signs of stabilisation, will continue to exert negative pressure on Italian insurers' ratings in the short to medium term.
Chartis is to begin offering its recently launched cyber protection package, CyberEdge, in 17 countries accross Europe. CyberEdge covers a range of cyber threats faced by any organisation that deals with electronic information, from data liability and notification costs to network interruption and cyber extortion. It provides tailored third and first party coverages and specialist advice to prevent lasting financial and corporate damage.
GCHQ in Cheltenham played host today to this year’s Cyber Security Challenge finalists. The aim of the Cyber Security Challenge, which features on the shortlist for this year’s Risk Management Awards, is to test both the cyber security skills of contestants through a number of online games and challenges created by commercial companies, and to encourage talented people into the cyber security profession.
Marsh has appointed Andrew Chester as CEO of Bowring Marsh, the company's specialist international placement broking division. Chester, who will retain his responsibilities as chairman of Marsh’s global mining practice, will take up his position on 1 October and will continue to be based in London. He succeeds Nick Bacon who is leaving to pursue other opportunities following a 26-year career at the firm.
The majority of European companies believe that doing international business has become more risky over the last five years, and an overwhelming 95% are concerned about multinational and export risk over the same period, according to new research published by ACE Group today. According to ACE’s research, the four key factors that have caused European companies to reassess their approach to multinational and export risk recently are disruption from catastrophes (42%), financial crises (38%), greater dependency on overseas earnings (37%), and international terrorist events (33%).
The European Mobile Messaging Association (EMMA) and the Critical Messaging Association (CMA)have signed an agreement to form a coalition. The agreement was announced today at the Global Critical Messaging Summit in Stockholm. Both associations will now operate under the Critical Messaging Association name with EMMA operating as the Critical Messaging Association Europe (CMA Europe) and the current CMA operating as the Critical Messaging Association Americas (CMA Americas).
Following violent protests in Libya and Egypt and the reported death of US Ambassador Stevens, deputy head of Middle East and North Africa Forecasting Firas Abi Ali has warned of increased risk of attack on soft targets in Tunisia, Lebanon, Yemen, Jordan, Egypt and Libya.
SunGard Availability Services and the University of London have collaborated on a piece of research that considers the challenges organisations face in keeping people and information connected. Conducted through discussions with C-level and senior management IT decision-makers across the UK, France and Nordic countries, Delivering the Available Enterprise is authored by Nelson Phillips, Professor of Strategy and Organisational Behaviour at Imperial College.
A series of research reports released by business analytics services company SAS imply that UK businesses are beginning to acknowledge the value of harnessing big data by assigning financial value to it on the company balance sheet. The Centre for Economics and Business Research also calculates that better use of big data could add £216bn to the UK economy between 2012 and 2017 – equivalent to 22% of the UK net debt, or more than the 2011/12 defence, NHS and education budgets combined.
A disgruntled former employee of Gucci faces up to six years in prison for hacking into the company’s computers and causing US$200,000 of damage, through lost time and resources.
To help companies manage the impacts of low wind, the Met Office has launched a new service providing 30 years of climatology data detailing hourly wind speeds for customer defined sites and heights. The Site Wind Index is updated monthly and annually. As wind energy capacity in the UK and across Europe continues to grow, volatility in wind resource can have a significant impact on industry and the financial performance of individual companies.
QBE has signed a deal with technology provider Riskex, which will now provide the insurer’s casualty clients with access to AssessNET, an online health and safety management system. As a result of the deal, users will have access to health and safety management information organised through three core areas: risk assessment; accident reporting and investigation; and safety auditing.
Members of the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) will receive increased commission levels from 10 per cent to up to 15 per cent when they place trade credit insurance through the UK Export Finance initiative, says the association.
Specialist insurer Ecclesiastical has appointed Angus Roy as head of risk services. He joins from Allianz Commercial in Glasgow where he was a senior risk control surveyor.
Financial service start-ups are facing record wait times for FSA approval, with the average wait now reaching 22.9 weeks, according to data obtained by City law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. The length of time firms must currently wait for approval is nine per cent longer than the previous record peak, 21.1 weeks, in Q2 2010. RPC says that approval times are taking longer because the FSA is scrutinising a much higher proportion of start-ups’ business plans than ever before.
Novae Group has announced a re-organisation of the key management team within its reinsurance division, Novae Re, in Zurich and London, following a number of departures earlier this summer. Rob Preston has moved permanently from London to Zurich to oversee the re-organisation as managing director of Novae Zurich. Rob formerly ran Novae’s political violence and kidnap and ransom/piracy unit.
MSM Risk Management is today warning that the insurance industry urgently needs to address resource allocation to boost profits. However, effective resource allocation is not possible without good data systems, as MSM Risk Management managing director Thomas Coles explains, “After the disastrously expensive year the insurance industry has had, it is vital that it addresses the factors that are within its control in order to boost its operational effectiveness.
The Secure Content Storage Association (SCSA) has chosen Cryptography Research to provide content security expertise. The SCSA is a consortium of companies in the entertainment and storage space founded by SanDisk, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Bros. and Western Digital, to provide consumers with new ways to build digital home libraries. The SCSA’s Project Phenix initiative will give consumers an easier and faster way to organise, store and move their high definition digital movies and TV shows across multiple devices.
Fitch Ratings says in a new report that the rating outlook for the UK life insurance sector remains stable, indicating that the vast majority of UK life insurer ratings are likely to be affirmed over the next 12-24 months. Fitch's outlook assumes a weak, economic recovery, with modest GDP growth. The outlook does not take into account potential exogenous shocks to the economy but will be updated to reflect such events if they occur.
Banks and their customers will be better protected if the Financial Services Authority’s new recommendations on disaster planning are followed to the letter, business continuity provider, Phoenix, says.
Phoenix argues that modern technology and specialist knowledge for organisations to have ‘always on’ systems is readily available and there is no excuse for banks not to have entirely robust IT infrastructure and effective recovery plans.
Aon has announced the appointment of Bruce Carnegie-Brown as non-executive chairman of Aon UK Limited. Carnegie-Brown started his career at Bank of America, then moved on to JP Morgan Chase where he spent 18 years in a number of senior leadership positions including managing director, UK Investment Banking Group, chairman, JP Morgan Securities Asia Ltd in Tokyo, and head of European and Asian debt capital markets. He then spent three years at Marsh Ltd as CEO in the UK, progressing to become CEO of the EMEA business. His most recent executive appointment was managing partner of 3i Group plc.
A survey of the risk calibrations applied to Solvency II internal models in development by UK life insurers has highlighted the need for a considerable degree of work on validating and documenting risk measures. The Towers Watson survey suggests that specific market and non-market risks presenting the biggest validation challenges include interest rates, credit spreads and mortality and lapse assumptions, with up to two thirds of firms still looking to make considerable progress in these areas.
Insurers are increasingly offering financial loss coverage as extensions to traditional liability policies – but the term is poorly understood and part of a confusing range of expressions with no legal definition, a new study by the International Underwriting Association has revealed. The report, Financial Loss. What is it and when is it covered?, was produced after the association’s Liability Underwriters’ Group identified a lack of detailed guidance for the market in the UK.
XL Group has extended its global programme offering with the launch of XL WorldPass Environmental. The product has been developed to provide coverage to a broad range of industrial and commercial operators.
Aon Benfield has launched Elements 7, a loss calculation platform designed to enable insurers to more easily customise catastrophe models. Insurers can now incorporate their own views on the risk of property damage through customised vulnerability curves, based on their actual loss experience or current portfolio. The platform gives insurers access to Impact Forecasting’s 30 catastrophe models spanning over 20 territories and six key perils, with insight on territories worldwide,
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has signalled its intention to establish a local presence in Sub-Saharan Africa with the appointment of Delphine Maidou as CEO of its regional subsidiary, AGCS of Africa Pty Ltd. Maidou, currently AGCS's head of market management in Canada, will be based in the company’s Johannesburg office.
Fitch Ratings says its outlook for the global reinsurance sector remains stable, as capital, underwriting and operating trends are expected to support reinsurers' current ratings over the next one to two years. The ratings agency anticipates further strengthening of the sector's already-strong capitalisation and continued premium growth into 2013
Zurich is launching a study into security and privacy risks to help businesses protect themselves from data and privacy breaches. Risk managers are invited to contribute to the new study by completing an online questionnaire at bit.ly/PSFJJr. The deadline for contributions is Friday 7 September.
AlienVault has been named one of the World Economic Forum’s 2013 Technology Pioneers, joining 23 of the most innovative global technology start-ups, recognised for their potential to transform the future of business and society.
According to catastrophe modeling firm AIR Worldwide, the drought in the US agricultural heartland continues to deteriorate crops in the Corn Belt with no meaningful precipitation relief in sight. After the hottest July on record, insured losses from the 2012 drought are now expected to surpass losses of other historical droughts. AIR estimates that losses resulting from farmer claims for the crop insurance industry may exceed US$13bn with potential losses as high as US$20bn.
Fitch Ratings indicates in a new report that capital market alternatives to reinsurance from sources such as cat bonds, collateralised quota-share reinsurance vehicles, or sidecars, and other risk transfer structures represent an increasingly viable alternative to the use of traditional reinsurance.
Marsh has appointed Kenneth Miger as CEO of Marsh AB in Sweden. Miger will join from Securitas AB, the global security services group headquartered in Sweden, where he is currently group risk and insurance director. Prior to this, he held senior risk management positions at Electrolux and Scania.
Hurricane Isaac is expected to make landfall in Louisiana late today or early Wednesday, coinciding with the seventh anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Fitch Ratings anticipates losses related to Isaac will be largely borne by primary insurers, but estimates remain uncertain as the storm has yet to make landfall.
Fitch Ratings says the spate of Asia-Pacific catastrophes in the past two years have prompted reinsurers to take stock of their existing portfolio and re-evaluate their underwriting approach and risk appetite.
Market volatility and global regulation are driving multi-national insurance carriers to increase their focus on controlling liability risks and improving transparency, according to a SunGard-sponsored risk trends reports for the US. "Supervisory focus on risk and economic capital management underscores the importance of embedding strong risk management principles throughout an enterprise and moving beyond just ‘tick-the-box’ compliance,” says Don Canning, vice-president for SunGard’s insurance business.
Liberty Syndicates has hired Peter Smith as head of its new specialty products division. Following this latest appointment, Liberty Syndicates is planning to launch a new, dedicated team of underwriters writing treaty personal accident and treaty political risks, credit and crisis management.
Flood risk assessment consultancy, Ambiental, has joined the Aon Benfield Impact Forecasting team to bolster its flood model development capabilities
Travelers has named John Abramson as the company’s new head of legal and compliance for its European businesses. Abramson most recently worked at Flagstone Re where he held the position of general counsel, Europe and global chief compliance officer. Prior to this, he worked at Chartis for nine years, where his last role was deputy general counsel for Chartis Europe.
Cooper Gay has appointed Mike Fraser as divisional director of its professional risks claims team. Fraser joins from the Howden Broking Group, and will lead a team which handles UK and international professional indemnity, directors' and officers' liability and crime insurance claims.
Aon Risk Solutions has appointed Laurence White as head of broking, UK.
White was previously head of broking, corporate and Affinity and has a wealth of experience in broking having been with Aon for 24 years.
The latest Business Crime Index from AXA Commercial Lines and Personal Intermediary shows levels of crime committed against businesses in the UK have grown by 16% in the worst hit areas, while across the UK the cost of theft has increased significantly alongside a rise in the use of violence. The findings, taken from AXA’s business insurance claims records to end May 2012, suggest that the riots of last summer contributed to an overall 3% increase in the level of crimes against businesses during the last twelve months.
David Rees joins employee-owned insurance broker R K Harrison to head a dedicated cyber practice within its specialist casualty team. Rees joins R K Harrison from Marsh, where most recently he was a senior vice-president in their media/tech errors and omissions department. Rees joined Marsh’s E&O team in 2005, focusing primarily on the needs of technology and telecom companies, as well as running the London intellectual property insurance team.
FireHost has launched a new business continuity offering supported by DYN DNS hosting. DNS hosting extends the provider's business continuity capabilities beyond high-availability and load balancing solutions. FireHost’s new business continuity solutions allow users to choose between 17 different failover facilities, dispersed across five continents. Customers that require additional control can layer advanced DNS hosting features.
Congratulations to all the finalists in this year's Risk Management Awards. This year's winners will be announced at a black tie gala dinner and ceremony on the 14 November at the Lancaster London Hotel. Last year, the awards were attended by hundreds of industry professionals and we look forward to welcoming the biggest names in the industry again this year.
Zurich has announced that Michael Kerner has been appointed CEO of its general insurance division and member of the group executive committee (GEC). Kerner will take up his new position on 1 September 2012, subject to regulatory approval. Kerner, presently CEO of the firm's global corporate division in North America, will be based in Zurich and report to Zurich CEO Martin Senn.
AXA has renewed its commercial property loss adjusting contract with GAB Robins. The solus deal for claims up to £250,000 in value will run for three years.
AIR Worldwide has expanded its product offering for commercial insurers with a capability for determining losses from natural catastrophes to buildings under construction. CLASIC/2TM Version 14.0 introduces the ability to model builder’s risk policies for the AIR earthquake and hurricane models for the United States. According to the US Census Bureau, in the first four months of 2012 alone, the total value of residential and nonresidential construction work on US soil exceeded US$238 billion.
The insurance industry has published riot claims data and calls on the government to urgently reform The Riots Damages Act (1886). Insurers experienced 3,000 riot claims and customers can expect to receive around £200m in compensation from insurers. While the industry continues to help those affected, insurers are asking the government to review the Riot Damages Act to simplify, speed up and improve the claims process to reflect the demands of modern society.
Marine insurance market conditions remain generally favorable to buyers despite a succession of natural catastrophes and other significant losses since the beginning of 2011, according to a report published today by Marsh. The Japan earthquake and tsunami, flooding in Thailand, the Costa Concordia loss, and Rena oil spill have resulted in significant cargo, hull, and liability claims, notes Marsh’s latest Marine Market Monitor.
The expanding online universe has introduced new financial risks that may not be covered under general and professional liability insurance, including standard D&O policies, warns Willis. In its latest Executive Risks Boardroom Guide, the broker advises corporate directors and risk managers to ensure that they buy appropriately tailored policies that provide protection against the rapidly expanding risks to which they are vulnerable.
Canopius has appointed Richard Bradley, FCA as COO of its UK retail business unit, reporting to Tim Rolfe, chief executive.
Catastrophe modeling firm AIR Worldwide reports that Hurricane Ernesto continues toward a landfall tonight near Chetumal, the capital of the Mexican state of Quintana Roo on the Yucatan Peninsula near the border with Belize. Air Force Hurricane Hunters discovered today that the storm has continued to strengthen, and based on their findings, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) officially designated Ernesto a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale in its 2:00PM EDT Public Advisory.
The Chartered Insurance Institute's new Certificate in London Market Insurance Specialisation has reached full capacity just one month after launch, revealing a strong demand for dedicated qualifications tailored to the London insurance market.
Last year’s major catastrophes have triggered a review by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) of the way in which contingent business interruption (CBI) cover is written in the Lloyd’s market. The review will examine the quality of data held by the market on contingent BI risks and how underwriters monitor their aggregations and exposures in this area.
The violence that rocked the UK’s biggest cities during the riots of 2011 accounted for almost 60% of the business continuity plans being invoked during August 2011, according to Phoenix which has today published results from its annual invocation statistics survey.
Last year’s major catastrophes have triggered a review by the Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) of the way in which contingent business interruption cover is written in the Lloyd’s Market. The review is examining the quality of data held by the market on contingent BI risks and how underwriters monitor their aggregations and exposures in this area.
Analysis of frauds recorded on the CIFAS Staff Fraud Database during the first half of 2012, compared with 2011, shines a new light on the problem of fraud committed by organisational insiders, and reveals several alarming increases. The dangers posed to an organisation by its own staff are, often, not as readily acknowledged when compared with the threat of fraud committed by an outsider.
JLT Specialty has launched a 2-3 partner professional indemnity insurance (PI) service through an exclusive arrangement with Aviva. PI claims can take three to five years, or sometimes longer, to be developed. This means that we are only now starting to appreciate the full effect of the claims arising from the financial crisis of 2008.
ACE Group has today launched a dedicated UK helpline and website, offering professional legal advice free of charge to its directors and officers (D&O) and employment practices liability (EPL) insurance customers. ACE is making the helpline and website available to all individual and business customers that currently have an ACE D&O or EPL policy in place.
The European Commission has closed its antitrust investigation into certain provisions accompanying claim-sharing and joint reinsurance agreements in the marine insurance sector. After opening proceedings in August 2010, the Commission conducted a market investigation with ship owners, brokers and commercial insurers, concluding that there insufficient evidence of anti-competitive practices.
Big data analytics has the potential to reduce the growing number of cyber security risks and increase business agility, according to global information security body, Information Security Forum (ISF). The findings are revealed in a new report called Data Analytics for Information Security – From hindsight to insight.
Research commissioned by SunGard Availability Services suggests that only 40% of UK organisations think an inability to deliver availability will result in them losing customers. This comes despite widely-publicised customer discontent following recent high-profile business service delivery failures – whether systemic or technology related.
Specialist insurer Hiscox has merged its operations in global media, entertainment and events. Headed up by Suzanne Kemble as global head of media, entertainment and events, the new division will serve as a single, one-stop-shop for a wide range of risks including media errors and omissions (professional indemnity), property, production insurance, advertisers’ contingency and event cancellation.
JLT Specialty has launched a Buyers’ Guide to Solicitors’ PI. The five step guide covers risk assessment criteria, the insurance supply chain and the impact of business planning on premiums. The guide also sets the purchasing process within the context of broader market conditions.
After two rounds of public consultation, and discussions with the Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems (CPSS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), the Basel Committee has issued today, as part of Basel III, interim rules for capitalising exposures to CCPs that are intended to come into effect as of January 2013.
The majority of European companies feel underprepared for emerging risk and terrorism and political violence is their top concern, according to new research by ACE, published today. However only seven per cent of companies have fully comprehensive insurance cover in place for terrorism and political violence and 34% have none at all.
The UK Payments Council has responded to a recent report by Associated Press that it will be difficult to get access to cash during the Olympics, maintaining that extensive planning over many months will ensure it will be business as usual at cash machines across London throughout games time.
The catastrophe reinsurance market may be on the cusp of a strategic shift, with third party capital providers set to take on increasing amounts of peak catastrophe risk in the future, according to Willis Capital Markets & Advisory (WCMA).
Members of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) have elected Amanda Blanc, ACII, CEO, AXA Insurance Commercial Lines and Personal Intermediary, a Chartered insurer, as its 116th president. Blanc takes over from Julian James, ACII, who is chief executive officer of Lockton Companies LLP, a Chartered insurance broker. Tom Woolgrove, managing director, Personal Lines Direct Line Group, has also been elected as CII deputy president.
Beazley has joined the growing list of members of ORIC, the operational risk loss data consortium for the global insurance sector. Andrew Pryde, chief risk officer at Beazley, said “ORIC is a leading player and a thought leader. The consortium gives its members access to valuable external data that enhances our internal data and helps inform operational risk quantification and modelling in a Solvency II environment..."
The British Bankers' Association has issued the following statement in respect of their 2008 consultation document on LIBOR.
One of the largest international consultations into cybercrime has been launched. Called Project 2020, the study by the International Cyber Security Protection Alliance, led by Europol, will analyse current trends in cybercrime and how they may evolve over the next eight years and beyond. “During the past 24 months, critical infrastructure in countries around the world has been under daily cyber attack from both organised criminal networks and state-sponsored entities,” says John Lyons, the chief executive of the International Cyber Security Protection Alliance.
Following the wettest June on record in the UK, RSA has announced a net loss across the group’s UK household, motor and commercial property portfolios from last month’s adverse weather is estimated to be around £40m. Current expectations are that the impact of the continued rainfall experienced to date in July will be around £10m.
Cyrille Charbonnel has been appointed to the newly created role of group chief operating officer at Coface In this role, he will manage the operational functions of the group, alongside Jean-Marc Pillu, chief executive officer, and more specifically the commercial, underwriting, information, claims and collection functions. he retains his responsibilities as group organisation director.
Electrical Contractors’ Insurance Holdings has announced the appointment of Tim Ablett to the role of chairman at ECIH and its subsidiaries Electrical Contractors Insurance Company (ECIC) and Electrical Contractors Insurance Services (ECIS).
A new report into corporate fraud is calling for businesses to use more private prosecutions to combat the issue, estimated to cost the UK £73 billion annually. Commissioned by law firm Eversheds, accountants and business adviser PKF and the Midlands Fraud Forum, the report aimed to assess how sanctions are used against fraudsters and how this can be used to maximise deterrence.
Small and medium sized businesses in the UK have identified continuing eurozone woes and government spending cuts as the main factors impacting upon their business optimism, according to an AXA Commercial Lines study.
Global professional services company Towers Watson has appointed Ross Howard as global leader for its insurance and reinsurance brokerage business. He will succeed Bill Eyre who, after 14 years in the position, will take on a newly developed role focused on client and market relationship development.
The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) published today its final report on draft guidelines for Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA). The report underlines the purposes of the ORSA and provides additional details on how the ORSA is to be interpreted.
There is still time to enter this year’s Risk Management Awards. Winning one of these prestigious awards is the mark of achievement in your sector and provides individuals and organisations with unparalleled professional recognition. Now in their third year, the Awards recognise those individuals and teams that have significantly added to the understanding and practice of risk management.
Today’s release of the Guidelines for Solvency II Reporting & Disclosure requirements will add more pressure on policy makers in Brussels to reach agreement on remaining contentious issues, says PwC. This in turn will allow the industry to move on with its implementation plans for all aspects of Solvency II, according to Paul Clarke, global Solvency II leader at the firm.
Amid the furore surrounding the LIBOR-fixing scandal, new Forum of Private Business research shows that many cash-starved small businesses are still looking to the banks to provide growth capital and restore confidence. A huge 94% of firms on the Forum’s cash flow and finance panel see improved access to finance as ‘important’ or ‘very important’ to restoring business confidence – with 40% reporting that their cash position has not improved over recent months.
Electrical Contractors’ Insurance Company (ECIC) has launched a new product specifically designed for the green energy industry, targeting those contractors who operate in the domestic and light commercial marketplace.
While insurers reacted quickly to help customers hit by last August’s riots, the riot compensation scheme has failed too many Londoners the ABI has said. With latest figures showing that just over half of the 3,487 claims made by Londoners to the Metropolitan Police for compensation for property damage sustained in the riots have either been rejected or discontinued, the ABI is urging the government to overhaul the Riot (Damages) Act 1886.
Warnings from the FBI about the potential for security breaches have been issued to businesses ahead of the switch off of systems protecting PCs and laptops from malware and virus attacks. With 12% of Fortune 500 companies estimated to be affected by malware infections, KPMG’s Stephen Bonner comments that complacency and inertia is not an option for business.
Specialist technology underwriter Rick Welsh has joined AEGIS London to launch a cyber insurance book for the Lloyd’s managing agent.
The business will be written via a consortium of Lloyd’s managing agents, formed and led by Welsh, called the Aegis Cyber Consortium.
Further flooding affected the UK during the weekend of 6th and 7th July following further outbreaks of exceptionally heavy rainfall. The UK was subject to the wettest April to June period on record resulting in saturated ground, high water tables, and full reservoirs and therefore providing ideal antecedent conditions for flooding. The rain over the weekend was associated with a low pressure system that has been causing heavy rainfall since July 5.
Torrential rain is affecting large parts of East Anglia, the Midlands, Northern England and Wales, increasing the risk of significant, and in parts, severe flooding for rivers today. According to the Environment Agency, the areas at greatest likelihood of severe flooding include Derbyshire, Lancashire, South and West Yorkshire, Staffordshire, Greater Manchester, Blackburn, Blackpool, Warrington, Cheshire and Halton. Flooding of properties and disruption to travel is expected and people are being urged to take action to prepare. So far today, 104 flood alerts and 15 flood warnings have been issued.
UK organisations are leaving too much to chance and ignoring recent business disasters, in the mistaken belief that their supply chain is immune to failure. Too many organisations are also adopting a ‘one size fits all’ approach to their supply chain, meaning that critical stretch points are often missed, putting business at risk. With 16,871 companies going into liquidation in the UK in 2011, the consequences for customers in the supply chain can be huge.
A security expert and member of professional association ISACA, Professor John Walker, says that the multi-vectored nature of an advanced evasion technique (AET) attack means that organisation’s need to modify their conventional IT security. AETs are used to attack networks by combining several known evasion methodologies to create a new technique that is delivered over several layers of a network simultaneously. This allows the attacker to successfully deliver known malicious code without detection.
Bomb disposal services firm Ramora UK has just completed the removal of the second of two WWII pipemines that had been buried underground for some 60 years on land that currently forms part of the BAE Systems site at Cowes on the Isle of Wight. It is believed that these mines were laid when the site was occupied by RAF Somerton during the war so that the airfield could be rendered unusable in the event of an enemy invasion. Most of them were removed by MoD bomb disposal teams when the airfield was decommissioned but two of them were missed.
A free to use live flood alert website has been launched today. Users are able to access interactive maps of flood risks throughout the UK. The Environment Agency-licensed FloodAlerts service was developed by Shoothill Ltd, and is the first graphical representation of the flood warning data which provides localised updates every 15 minutes, keeping users informed about the potential flood risks in their area.
Commenting on European Commission proposals for Packaged Retail Investment Products (PRIPs) and a revision of the Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD II), business advisory firm Deloitte has said that, while the Commission’s PRIPs and IMD II proposals are designed to level the playing field for the sale and disclosure of insurance and retail investment products and strengthen consumer protection, it will be difficult for firms to ensure that Key Information Documents (KIDs) will serve their original purpose.
The insurance industry plays a pivotal role in integrating new tools, technology and solutions to protect populations and assets against growing concerns about natural disasters and, in the process, helps ensure a sustainable future. So says Rowan Douglas, chief executive officer of Global Analytics at Willis Group Holdings, during a speech at the World Bank’s Bi-Annual Understanding Risk Conference in Cape Town, South Africa.
Wildfires continue to cause damage across the western US, in particular in Waldo Canyon in Colorado, northwest of Colorado Springs in El Paso County, which has destroyed over 300 properties, making it the most destructive wildfire in the state’s history. Currently, 3,000 people in Colorado Springs remain under mandatory evacuation order – a figure which represents 10% of the total evacuated at the peak of the fire. Elsewhere in Colorado – according to the Colorado Department of Emergency Management - there are six further active wildfires, though none are threatening urban areas.
The traditional coverage offered by Europe’s insurance providers may not comprehensively address present-day digital risk, according to the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA). A new report from the digital risk agency, Incentives and barriers to the cyber insurance market in Europe, which calls for a kick-start in the cyber insurance market, identifies a series of obstacles to the development of an effective cyber insurance market.
The global insurance market continued to firm in the second quarter of 2012 continuing a clear trend that began in the third quarter of 2011, according to the new Marsh Risk Management Global Insurance Index. The index, which is comprised of client renewal data on property, casualty, and financial and professional lines of business, weighted by premium placed, taken from 20 large economies across all continents, showed that although rates rose during the second quarter the increase was less pronounced than in the previous two quarters.
Matthieu Caillat has been appointed chief executive officer of AXA Corporate Solutions UK. Caillat spent seven years within AXA Corporate Solutions head office in Paris, where he was in charge of business development and strategy for specialty markets worldwide. Two years ago, he joined AXA Corporate Solutions UK branch, as managing director.
In response to reports around parts of the UK being hit with severe floods and landslides. PwC is warning insureds that flooding and consequent claims could impact premiums in flood areas. Says Mohammad Khan, insurance partner at PwC: "If the weather reports for the coming few days are wrong and we have more rain...it could unfortunately lead to more flooding and landslides.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has today confirmed that its cost recovery scheme, Fee for Intervention (FFI), will start on 1 October 2012 subject to Parliamentary approval. FFI recovers costs from those who break health and safety laws for the time and effort HSE spends helping to put matters right such as, investigating and taking enforcement action.
The British Bankers' Association has issued a statement regarding yesterday's report about LIBOR.
A flexible working approach will minimise employee absenteeism during the London 2012 Olympic Games, SunGard Availability Services have said.
Keith Tilley, managing director, UK, and executive vice-president, Europe, said that organisations should put measures to keep workers content “high on the priority list”.
With just one month to go until the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games, businesses should be looking at the final priorities and steps to be taken to ensure operations remain productive, while employees also enjoy the Games.
Tidjane Thiam has been nominated by the board of the Association of British Insurers to become its next chairman, with effect from July 3. Thiam, group chief executive of Prudential plc, takes over from Tim Breedon of Legal & General who will be stepping down having completed his two-year term of office. Thiam has been an executive director at Prudential plc since 2008, having previously spent six years in executive positions at Aviva plc. He is a member of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Council.
A report on the UK manufacturing industry issued today (26 June) by insurance governance experts Mactavish highlights a dangerous confluence of increasing claim disputes, inadequate risk governance on the part of manufacturers, and the failure of brokers and insurers to provide fit-for-purpose protection to their clients.
The RBS Group has said it is “cautiously optimistic” that its customers’ accounts will be back to normal tomorrow after five days of disruption.
The banking group, which owns Natwest and Ulster Bank, has come under criticism from customers who have been unable, in extreme circumstances, to view their current balance or receive payments.
Responding to a five-year analysis of data from Google’s Safe Browsing service, Cryptzone says that it is clear that the threat landscape of today has evolved considerably from that of just five years ago. According to Grant Taylor, UK vice-president of the European IT threat mitigation specialist, five years ago a then-fledgling Facebook was just three years old, whilst Twitter was only a year old, having been launched in July of 2006.
Changes in the costs regime and processes for handling employers liability and public liability claims need to be an important focus for MGAs ahead of their implementation in 2013. Speaking at the Managing General Agents’ Association (MGAA) London market briefing earlier this week, Alistair Kinley, policy development partner at Berrymans Lace Mawer LLP, highlighted a range of developments and changes in the EL and PL claims area, and urged MGAs to consider their implications as a strategic importance.
A report from business advisory firm Deloitte highlights how insurers are preparing for the introduction of Solvency II by changing their approach to calculating capital adequacy requirements. Conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, the latest edition of the annual Deloitte Solvency II survey of insurers found that more than half of respondents plan to change their approach to calculating regulatory capital, and of those, 60% have increased the sophistication of their approach.
The European insurance sector should be able to absorb shocks arising from a hypothetical Greek exit from the euro, provided such an exit were orderly, says Fitch Ratings. "Most major European insurers have negligible direct exposure to the sovereign debt of Greece – typically less than one per cent of shareholders' equity," says Chris Waterman, head of EMEA insurance at Fitch. "However, a disorderly Greek exit could have a materially negative impact on the ratings of European insurers, with contagion hitting credit quality and asset values, leading to a squeeze on insurers' capital."
Canopius has announced the appointment of Paul Dilley as head of underwriting, UK Retail. Reporting to Tim Rolfe, CEO, UK Retail, Dilley will be responsible for the entire underwriting operations of Canopius’s UK retail strategic business unit.
Risk Decisions has announced the release of Predict! 4.3, the latest version of its software, offering two new advanced reporting modules. Both products are available as separate add-ons to the company’s core Predict! Risk Controller software. Predict! Connect allows companies to integrate a real-time feed of risk information into their cross-discipline management information system, such as SAP or SharePoint.
Transport for London will be hosting a live Twitter chat this week aimed at helping businesses and commuters to plan ahead of the London 2012 Games. TfL will be joined by experts from Unilever and Sagicor at Lloyd’s, who will answer questions to help Britain’s employers and commuters plan their transport and flexible working plans during Games time. The chat will be hosted by the official London 2012/TfL Get Ahead of the Games transport advice Twitter feed @GAOTG, using the hashtag #GAOTG.
Public company executives with operations inside and outside the US may be in for a surprise lawsuit, says Chubb. Despite the odds that they and their directors will be sued in the next 12 months, their new Public Company Risk Survey , has found that more than 80% believe this is unlikely, and 50% of the companies surveyed had operations outside the US including Europe.
Following a year on unprecedented occurrence of natural disasters causing hundreds of billions of pounds in property damage worldwide, FM Global has announced the launch of the FM Global NatHaz Toolkit, an online resource for natural hazard planning. Though predictive science is improving, natural hazards continue to pose great threats to facilities, equipment and productivity simply because the when, where and severity of any natural hazard occurrence can change sharply and often without warning.
Zurich has announced that it is to do away with the role of chief administrative officer (CAO) and will instead integrate specific areas of that office’s responsibility into other functions. As part of this restructuring at global HQ, group general counsel Yannick Hausmann will be appointed to the group executive committee (GEC).
Aon Risk Solutions has won a contract to supply facility services provider ISS with global risk management services and insurance advice.
ISS is a global organisation with over 500,000 employees around the world, and offers a range of facility services from office cleaning, catering and landscaping to property and support services, security and facility services management.
Authorities increased security measures in Greece's capital, Athens, following an attempted grenade attack targeting the offices of private television station Skai TV on 17 June, according to reports from Red24. Two unknown assailants reportedly threw a grenade at the building before fleeing on a motorbike.
The six-month Atlantic hurricane season, which officially started on June 1st, has begun in earnest early with two tropical storms hitting the United States before the season had even begun. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted that there will be about "12 named storms with six hurricanes, including three major hurricanes," this season.
UK insurers may see increases of up to 97% in their capital requirement for catastrophe exposures under Solvency II rules when making calculations under the new RMS model version 11, in comparison to under version 10. Similar, if not quite so steep, increases are estimated for French and German insurers. This is according to a report released today by Willis Re.
Analysis of the sophisticated malware program Flame has further underlined the considerable security risk posed by malware of this kind. According to network security firm, Venafi, until organisations find and replace all of the MD5 certificates on their networks, which are virtual open doors, they are going to continue to be hit with this emerging type of certificate-based attack. Venafi analysed the networks of over 450 Global 2000 organisations and believes 17.4% of certificates in to be signed with unsafe, hackable, MD5 algorithms.
The insurance industry should move beyond traditional insurance solutions and start thinking of new ways to protect companies against the consequences of so-called Black Swan events, such as the Gulf oil spill or last year’s Japanese tsunami. So says, Phil Ellis, CEO of Willis’ Global Solutions Consulting Group, speaking at the Airmic conference in Liverpool this week. Ellis proposed a number of innovative types of risk transfer solutions to help companies recover from severe reversals of fortune.
Solvency II rules, designed to align the treatment of insurance across Europe, could force annuity providers to hold significantly more reserves and switch from investing in corporate bonds to lower-yielding assets. Deloitte estimates that in the best case this could reduce annuity rates by 5%, but might lead to a fall of up to 20%. For a pensioner with a £100,000 pension fund, these changes could reduce their income by between £300 and £1,100 a year.
Research from PwC has found a decrease in European financial services M&A activity during the first quarter of 2012. M&A activity fell by 40% to €9.7bn in Q1 2012 from €16.5bn in Q4 2011. This is also 1% down on the comparable figure of €9.8bn recorded in the 1st quarter of 2011. The figures for this quarter are distorted by the very large deal by Royal Bank of Scotland which sold RBS Aviation Capital to Sumitomo Mitsui for €5.8bn.
An market study conducated by advisory firm Grant Thornton has found that insurance companies should seek better balance in risk management across all risk categories, to successfully deliver their business plans within acceptable risk limits.The Risk Appetite Study canvassed the views of 43 chief executive officers and managing directors from leading London insurers.
Analytics and the ability to efficiently and effectively exploit big data and advanced modelling, in memory and real-time decisioning across channels and operations, will distinguish those that thrive in uncertain and uneven markets from those that fumble. This is among the trends identified by SunGard in examining “big data” initiatives within financial services.
XL Group has received approval from Lloyd’s to write political risk and trade credit risks using the Lloyd’s platform via XL Group’s Lloyd’s Syndicate 1209. XL also announced the expansion of its PRTC team with the addition of Mark Houghton as vice-president and senior underwriter at its Asia hub in Singapore. Houghton joins XL Group from Standard Chartered Bank in Singapore where he was director of trade credit insurance placements. His experience extends across a broad range of product disciplines including project and trade finance and securitisation
JLT Re has hired Henry Mikrut as executive vice-president.
Mikrut has over 25 years' industry experience as a consultant, financial analyst and internal auditor. Most recently, he worked at Willis Re where he was in charge of rating advisory services largely covering the US, Caribbean and northern South America based carriers.
Willis Group has announced the appointment of Antonio Tosti to the newly-created role of CEO of Willis' Latin American Reinsurance business. In addition to his new role, Tosti will maintain his current responsibilities as CEO of Willis' facultative business in Continental Europe, a position he took on in 2010. He will report to Luis Maurette, CEO, Willis Latin America and Jason Howard, CEO of Faber, Willis’ global facultative and wholesale broking business.
Over a third of manufacturers in Europe are continuing to focus on the risk, reliability and flexibility in their supply chain, which remains one of their biggest challenges. The survey also found that the growing trend for near shoring manufacturing facilities closer to end markets was felt by the majority to be an effective way of improving risk management.
Less than half of mid-sized businesses across Europe have plans in place to protect intellectual property and corporate secrets, according to recent research from global information management company Iron Mountain and PwC. Further, the research suggests that more than half believe protecting intellectual property and corporate secrets is less important than safeguarding customer, employee, business and financial information.