AMLIN BERMUDA LTD.
London insurer Amlin plc formed Amlin Bermuda Ltd. on October 24, with capacity of $1 billion, following a rights issue at a narrow discount to the market. Thus, it avoided the need for shareholder approval, which might have delayed the process by as much as three weeks. Amlin was up and running in December.
Personnel: Amlin operations director David Harris is interim CEO. Chief underwriting officer is John Andrews, who sits on several Lloyd's committees. Also on board: underwriter Ben Savill, formerly of Amlin US, and assistant underwriters Lisa O'Toole and Sophie Chapman.
Lines: Regional U.S. and international catastrophe reinsurance; initially excess of loss, proportional treaty later.
ARIEL REINSURANCE CO. LTD.
Private investors set up Ariel Reinsurance Co. Ltd., led by Tempest Re and NAC Re founder Don Kramer. Ariel bought the renewal rights and hired the management team of Rosemont Re from U.K. parent GoshawK Insurance Holdings (now essentially in runoff). Ariel will operate from Rosemont's offices.
Personnel: Kramer is chairman. CEO Russell Brooke and CFO Jonathan Beck are ex-Rosemont Re, as are 20 other staff. On board in London as "special advisor" is George Rivas, who founded Tempest Re with Kramer and was its chief operating officer. Mark Herman, ACE Bermuda's ex-president, is president of the parent company, Ariel Re Holdings.
Lines: Ariel Re Holdings: diversified insurance; Ariel Re: diversified reinsurance.
ARROW CAPITAL REINSURANCE CO. LTD.
Arrow was formed and is owned by investment firm Goldman Sachs, which already operates Arrow Re from Bermuda. Little information was forthcoming from the traditionally tight-lipped banker.
Personnel: Former Bermuda Registrar of Companies Kymn Astwood will be CEO.
ASCENDANT REINSURANCE LTD.
Ascendant was formed in November as a Class 4 reinsurer, one with capital in excess of $100 million. Its founders are David Whiting, Richard Black and Rick Pagnani. The last two were, until recently, senior executives working for Quanta Capital Holdings, Bermuda insurer. The company has not disclosed other information, such as its initial capitalization.
XL Capital agreed to a quota share reinsurance treaty with newly formed Cyrus Re. The company will be funded with $500 million of initial dedicated capital from its parent holding company, which is owned by institutional investors. Lead investor is Boston-based Highfields Capital Management, in which XL was an initial investor. Highfields runs a number of funds with institutional investment of around $6.5 billion and is also an investor in Integro, the broker formed by XL founder Robert Clements. Highfields also established Irish Reinsurance Partners. XL does not have a direct ownership stake in Cyrus.
Lines: XL will cede specified portions of its property catastrophe and retrocessional lines of business.
FLAGSTONE REINSURANCE LTD.
Hedge fund manager West End Capital, managed by Mark Byrne, has formed Flagstone Reinsurance Ltd., with an expected $1 billion initial capital.
Personnel: CEO is David Brown, a West End principal and accountant who held a similar role at finite reinsurer Centre Reinsurance (though he departed long before it entered into runoff). Brown is said to have sunk $30 million of his own into Flagstone Reinsurance. Chief underwriting officer is Guy Swayne, formerly of Lloyd's and most recently international chief underwriting officer at ACE Tempest Re. Also on board is Gary Prestia, ex-CEO of Alea's North American operations.
Lines: Property catastrophe reinsurance and some short-tail casualty.
HARBOR POINT RE LTD.
Chubb and Trident III, a private equity fund managed by Stone Point Capital, lead investment in Harbor Point Re Ltd. Chubb will transfer its continuing reinsurance business and related assets. Harbor Point will not assume Chubb's prior reinsurance liabilities, related assets or reserves. Chubb and Trident III invested $200 million apiece, with a further $1.1 billion from investors, including Harbor Point's management.
Personnel: Chubb Re's current CEO, John Berger, will manage Harbor Point. Stephen Friedman, a senior advisor to Stone Point, will be nonexecutive chairman. Tom Wafer and Greg Richardson will join the underwriting side, as will Jed Rhoads, Gail Gorman, Martin Vezina and Greg Haft.
Lines: Property/casualty reinsurance products.
HISCOX INSURANCE CO. (BERMUDA) LTD.
Hiscox will be capitalized at $500 million, from funds raised through a speedy rights issue and a $225 million bank loan. Specialist Lloyd's of London insurer Hiscox, established in 1901, expects its wholly owned Bermudian insurer to earn premiums of $325 million in 2006. Chief Operating Officer Sue Langley set up the company's offices in Bermuda. Hiscox is also examining relocating its headquarters to Bermuda from London.
Personnel: Chief executive officer is Robert Childs, managing director of Hiscox Global Markets and active underwriter of its Lloyd's Syndicate 33. Four underwriting and modeling staff will relocate to Bermuda from London.
Lines: A mix of reinsurance and retail business.
LANCASHIRE INS. CO. LTD.
Richard Brindle, Capital Z Financial Services Partners, Cypress and others have formed Lancashire Insurance Co. Ltd. The company has raised more than $1 billion, approximately $910 million in December via a share placing and an additional $125 million through the issue of subordinated notes and trust securities. A.M. Best Co. Inc. has assigned Lancashire an A- rating.
Personnel: Brindle, a former Lloyd's underwriter who helped to run Syndicate 488 with John Charman, will head it and be chief underwriting officer. Neil McConachie and Bob Spass will become chief financial officer and non-executive chairman, respectively.
Lines: Marine, energy and other short-tail risks.
NEW CASTLE RE CO. LTD.
Chicago-based hedge fund manager Citadel Investment Group, which has some $12 billion under management, launched a new Bermuda-based venture backed by $500 million. New Castle Reinsurance Co. Ltd. joins Citadel's existing Bermuda-based CIG Re., which was formed in September 2004 with $450 million in capital. CIG Re was clobbered by this year's hurricanes, but New Castle won an A- rating from A.M. Best.
Personnel: Christopher McKeown, ex-president and CEO of ACE Tempest Re and current president of CIG Re, will be CEO.
Lines: Property-per-risk, workers' comp, catastrophe and terrorism coverage, along with a core property catastrophe line for fully collateralized coverage, in the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Caribbean and Pacific Rim.
OMEGA SPECIALTY INS. CO.
Omega Underwriting Holdings is setting up Omega Specialty Insurance Co. Ltd., for which $157 million will be raised to support underwriting on Omega's Lloyd's of London syndicate 958, writer predominantly of short-tail property insurance and reinsurance business, and to support the proposed establishment of a Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance company. The company intends to start operations in the first quarter of 2006.
Lines: Predominantly short-tail.
VALIDUS REINSURANCE LTD.
The lead investors in Validus Reinsurance Ltd. are Aquiline Partners, a private equity investor run by former Marsh & McLennan chairman Jeffrey Greenberg, and partners from Venturion, another private equity firm. Validus is raising an expected $1.5 billion through a U.S. private placement.
Personnel: Edward J. Noonan, ex-president and CEO of American Re, is chairman and CEO of Validus. George Reeth, former chairman of the Willis Re North American reinsurance operation, is president. Conan Ward, formerly of AXIS Capital Holdings, is chief property underwriter. Paul Manders, from London market operations at Allianz, is running the marine business.
Lines: property catastrophe and other specialty lines.
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January 1, 2006
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