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People moves

ABI loses director general after 6 months

Kerrie Kelly is to step down as director general of the Association of British Insurers (ABI) barely six months after taking the role.

In a written statement, the ABI said that the former CEO of the Insurance Council of Australia was stepping down for personal reasons and would return to her home country.

Maggie Craig, director of life and savings at the ABI, will become director general on an interim basis while a successor is found.

A spokesperson for the trade body intimated to The Insurance Insider that a full external recruitment process would be undertaken, suggesting that it is likely to be months before Kelly's replacement begins work.

Outgoing ABI chairman Archie Kane lamented the departure of Kelly. "Although she has only been here for a short time, Kerrie has had the drive and energy to make an impact on the organisation and the industry during an important period. I am grateful for her contribution and wish her well in her future endeavours," he said.

However, he suggested that Craig was well placed to take on the mantle. "With over 30 years of experience at the cutting edge of financial services and the insurance industry, Maggie Craig possesses all of the qualities required to step up to this challenging role."

The ABI has around 400 corporate members. Together they hold around 15 percent of the shares of the companies listed on the London Stock Exchange. They also account for around 90 percent of domestic insurance sold in the UK.

Shaw replaces Pryce as head of £400mn Ace syndicate

Matthew Shaw has taken over from Richard Pryce, the head of Ace UK, as active underwriter for its Syndicate 2488.

Pryce will continue as in his role as president of Ace UK and Ireland.

Shaw has been working as chief underwriting officer for Ace Global Markets (AGM) and as chairman of Ace Tempest Re - both of which write their business through the Lloyd's syndicate.

In addition to taking up Pryce's mantle within the syndicate, Shaw will take over as president of AGM.

He will also join the boards of Ace European Group and Ace Underwriting Agencies.

Pryce was appointed as active underwriter of the syndicate in September 2003, a role that he continued to fulfil when he took over responsibility for Ace's UK and Ireland P&C business as well.

Commenting on the appointment, Pryce said: "Since Matthew Shaw assumed the role of chief underwriting officer for AGM in July 2008, he has made a significant contribution to the development of this business.

"I am confident that he, along with the AGM product line heads, will continue to profitably develop the business and maintain its market leading position."

In 2009 the larger of Ace's Lloyd's syndicates wrote gross premium of £400mn, although it ceded £106mn of this to other carriers.

Under Pryce's leadership Syndicate 2488 achieved a combined ratio of 76.9 percent in FY2009, which helped it to an underwriting profit of £70mn. This was supplemented by an investment return of £109mn.

In 2009, 32 percent of the syndicate's gross written premium was property business, with 24 percent financial lines, 16 percent aviation and 14 percent marine.

For 2010 Ace increased its capacity to £400mn of net premiums, telling the market that "it is clear that we intend to operate a syndicate with a sizeable mass for the foreseeable future".

Six new lawyers for expansive London firm

Sedgwick, Detert, Moran & Arnold has strengthened the (re)insurance contingent of its London office by recruiting six additional staff - three partners and three associates.

Edward Smerdon, Mark Kendall and Tristan Hall are the three partners. And they will be joined by associates Lucy Dyson, Jason McNerlin and Duncan Strachan.

Sedgwick represents clients in reinsurance cases, commercial disputes, non-claims cases and other non-contentious insurance work.

Ex-Mitsui underwriter to launch Torus PI division

Fast-expanding (re)insurer Torus is to start writing professional indemnity (PI) business through its joint venture with Nexus Underwriting Management.

Former Mitsui Sumitomo underwriter David Robinson is to head up the new PI operation.

Robinson joins Torus Executive Risks (TER) from Mitsui Sumitomo's Syndicate 3210, where he was most recently professional liabilities class underwriter.

During more than 20 years in the market he has also worked for the David Constable-headed Syndicate 386 and BP Theakston Syndicate 1101.

Robinson said that brokers and policyholders have suffered a significant dislocation in the PI market.

"TER's entry counteracts this. There are both short-term and longer-term opportunities to establish a strong new direction for the PI market," said Robinson.

"Leveraging the success to date, Torus Executive Risks' PI platform aims to be recognised as the market's new point of reference."

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