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Ex-QBE head Neal named as Lloyd's CEO; Just Group warns on capital

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Ex-QBE head Neal named as Lloyd's CEO; Just Group warns on capital

S&P Global Market Intelligence offers our top picks of insurance news stories and more published throughout the week.

Executive appointments

* Former QBE Insurance Group Ltd. head John Neal has been named CEO of Lloyd's of London, effective Oct. 15, taking over from Inga Beale.

* French reinsurer Scor SE has made a series of management changes, including naming Brona Magee as deputy CEO of Scor Global Life, as it reorganizes its nonlife business.

Just Group capital warning

* Just Group PLC will defer any declaration of an interim dividend for the first half as it waits for clarity on the U.K. Prudential Regulation Authority's proposed changes to rules for lifetime mortgages, which the insurer said would result in a material reduction in its capital position if implemented as outlined.

M&A buzz

* Scor rejected an acquisition offer from SGAM Covéa after determining that it reflected "neither the intrinsic value nor the strategic value" of the company. Covea had offered €43 per share for the French firm. Scor Chairman and CEO Denis Kessler said the offer showed "little understanding of the reinsurance industry."

* Separately, Scor is denying a news report that it has been in discussions about merging with fellow Bermuda-based reinsurer PartnerRe Ltd.

* Generali entered into exclusive talks with France-based Sycomore Asset Management's shareholders to buy a majority stake and to form a strategic partnership that will help drive its environmental, social and governance ambitions.

* BNP Paribas SA's Luxembourg unit, BGL BNP Paribas SA, completed the purchase of the entire outstanding shares in ABN AMRO Bank NV's ABN AMRO Bank (Luxembourg) SA and its fully owned subsidiary ABN AMRO Life SA, following regulatory approval.

In other news

* Six global insurers and reinsurers, including Hannover Re, Beazley PLC and Mapfre SA, suffered higher losses from natural catastrophes in 2017 than expected, according to a new report from reinsurance broker Willis Re.

* U.K. motor insurer Sabre Insurance Group PLC's former owner BC Partners and founder Angus Ball are planning to sell up to 44.76 million shares of the company, equivalent to 17.9% of its outstanding share capital.

* China's Anbang Insurance Group Co. Ltd. has selected JPMorgan to arrange the sale of its Netherlands-based subsidiary, VIVAT NV.

Featured during the week on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Excess capacity in spotlight as reinsurance industry prepares for Rendez-vous: The persistent abundance of traditional and alternative capital is likely to be a big talking point at an important, and opulent, meeting in Monte Carlo.

Global reinsurers stable, well-capitalized, Moody's says: The outlook for the global reinsurance industry remains stable thanks to robust capital positions, but pricing pressure could return in 2019, Moody's analysts said at a London briefing.

Global reinsurance pricing to come under pressure in 2019, says S&P Ratings: As 2018's price increases run out of steam, reinsurers' profitability will barely exceed their cost of capital this year and next, analysts said ahead of the reinsurance Rendez-vous in Monte Carlo.

Fitch raises reinsurance outlook, warns competition could intensify: The global reinsurance industry has reached a "new normal" of lower, but less volatile, shareholder returns, prompting a stable outlook, according to the ratings agency.