Robert Bentley traded in an executive parking spot at New York-based reinsurance broker Guy Carpenter & Co. for a new one at Newark-Calif.-based modeler Risk Management Solutions Inc. Bentley left Guy Carpenter as chief operating officer to become global COO at RMS.
Bentley's move puts the spotlight on the rising relevance of RMS and modeling and technology firms overall in the insurance industry.
The growing number of perils that now can be modeled and the increasing awareness of risk present an "opportunity that's really exploding within the industry," Bentley told Risk & Insurance®.
Not only are insurers and reinsurers searching out catastrophe modeling, data and consulting solutions, but banks, hedge funds, private equity and others in the capital markets are "increasing their need to identify, select, manage and transfer risk," he said.
On a personal level, working for RMS is a compelling opportunity. He has an intellectual attraction to this sort of analytical work, in part from his time in charge of Guy Carpenter's Instrat actuarial and catastrophe services department. At RMS, he reports directly to Hemant Shah, president and CEO, who has imbued the company with a strong founder's vision, values and strategy, Bentley said.
"Having worked in a big company for quite some time," he said, "the opportunity to work with a smaller, nimble company that has a founder's visions and strong values is very, very attractive."
The new position also takes Bentley from a "professional services" company to a "products/technology" company. "And that's very exciting," he said.
His departure from Guy Carpenter could raise questions about the Marsh & McLennan company, but Bentley dispels any them.
"My move really has to do with personal interest and professional interest," said the University of Virginia graduate, adding that he leaves behind a "thought company" and a "phenomenal group of people."
But Bentley does leave behind a ladder which he climbed pretty high. Besides being the first COO at Guy Carpenter, Bentley served as regional manager of broking operations for the U.S. Western region, led Instrat and was a member of the firm's executive committee.
At RMS, Bentley is "enabling the business" as he said Shah would put it, by being responsible for the operations of both the client development and consulting groups and its software, model and product development group. He will be based out of New Jersey.
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July 1, 2007
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