People Moves: Sompo International Announces New UK Leadership Team; SiriusPoint Names Smyth Head of Marine, Active U/W for Syndicate 1945

September 15, 2023

This edition of International People Moves details appointments at Sompo International and SiriusPoint.

A summary of these new hires follows here.

Sompo International Announces New UK Leadership Team

Sompo International, the commercial and consumer property/casualty re/insurer, announced a new leadership team for its UK commercial P&C insurance business unit.

Bob Thaker has been named CEO, Commercial P&C Insurance, Sompo International, UK, reporting to Julian James, CEO, Global Markets for Sompo International. Ian Keegan will be responsible for the London Market Wholesale & Specialty division and Mike Reid will lead the UK Commercial Lines division. Both will report into Mr. Thaker.

Thaker has also been appointed CEO of Sompo International’s UK business legal entity and Keegan appointed as its CUO, subject to regulatory approval.

“With a dedicated Sompo UK leadership team, we can more seamlessly execute on our strategy and get closer to our broker partners and clients across the UK to provide solutions that are more aligned with their needs,” James said. “We continue to simplify our structure while ensuring consistency in our underwriting appetite and risk controls across our commercial insurance businesses in Global Markets.”

Sompo International (also known as Sompo International Holdings Ltd.) is a Bermuda-based holding company with more than 9000 employees. Through its operating subsidiaries, Sompo International is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Sompo Holdings Inc., which has 75,000 employees worldwide, entities in over 46 countries and over US$35 billion in gross written premiums.

SiriusPoint Names Smyth Head of Marine, Active U/W for Syndicate 1945

SiriusPoint Ltd., the Bermuda-based specialty insurer and reinsurer, announced that it has appointed Stephen Smyth as head of Marine in London.

Smyth, who joins SiriusPoint on Oct. 16, 2023, will also be the active underwriter for Syndicate 1945, subject to Lloyd’s approval.

SiriusPoint underwrites marine insurance and reinsurance across its global platforms and is looking to expand its insurance book through its London branch and Lloyd’s Syndicate 1945. Smyth, who brings over 30 years’ experience in UK marine insurance to SiriusPoint, will also support SiriusPoint’s Stockholm-based marine team as he develops the company’s marine capabilities in the London and international markets.

In his role, Smyth will bolster SiriusPoint’s International underwriting leadership to optimize performance within the syndicate’s existing portfolios and support the Group in delivering its growth and profitability targets. He will also be responsible for evaluating new business opportunities. Smyth will report to Robert Harman, general manager SiriusPoint London Branch, and CEO & managing director, Sirius International Managing Agency (SIMA).

Smyth joins SiriusPoint from Travelers, where he has built a profitable specialist insurance operation for UK marine risks as managing senior underwriter of Marine. Prior to Travelers, Smyth was the head of UK Regional Marine and head of office at Beazley. He has previously held marine underwriting roles at Allianz, AIG and Commercial Union.

Smyth also served on the Joint Cargo Committee at Lloyd’s of London from 2001 to 2009 and was the UK market lead for Public/Private Partnership with NaVCIS Freight, (National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service), reporting into the National Police Chief’s Council.

“I am very pleased to welcome Steve to the business,” said Harman. “His experience and expertise will be a great asset as we focus on building out SiriusPoint’s marine underwriting specialism and develop our business in Syndicate 1945 and internationally.”

The hire follows a number of senior appointments at SiriusPoint as the business builds capability in its areas of focus. These include Head of London US Casualty David Rees; Global Head of Ceded Reinsurance Habib Kattan; and Deputy Chief Underwriting Officer Anthony Shapella. SiriusPoint has also recently promoted a number of colleagues within its leadership team, including Tom Leonardo to global head of Accident & Health; Nestor Lopez to chief information & technology officer; and Anders Holm to chief actuary of SiriusPoint International. Tomais Gaughan has also been promoted to head of Energy in London.

“SiriusPoint’s Lloyd’s businesses, including Sirius International Managing Agency and Syndicate 1945, are vital elements to SiriusPoint’s overall business and its strategy to be a high-performing underwriter,” commented Rob Gibbs, president & chief executive officer, SiriusPoint International.

“We see Lloyd’s as core to our business and we’re very excited about the opportunities available to us in the London Market, and the contribution we can make in that space,” he added. “Steve has deep market experience and relationships that support our ambitions as a growing player in cargo, fine art and specie across our London, International and global platforms.”