Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Co. (BHSI) said it is entering the healthcare underwriting market in Australia and has appointed Tony Bainbridge, previously with American International Group (AIG), to lead the effort.
The insurer also announced it has opened an office in Auckland, New Zealand, which is being headed by another AIG veteran, Cameron McLisky.
In Australia, BHSI will offer property, casualty and executive and professional lines coverages for the country’s hospitals and medical practices and facilities, according to Chris Colahan, president, Australasia region.
Bainbridge was most recently regional head of Healthcare, Asia Pacific, at AIG. Before that, he was Medical Malpractice underwriting manager for Newline Group. He has also been general manager at Avant Mutual and spent years on the reinsurance side of the business at Munich Re Australasia and Swiss Reinsurance Co. in Melbourne, Hong Kong and Tokyo. He began his career in liability underwriting, holding positions at several major insurers in the UK and Australia.
Bainbridge is based in BHSI’s office in Melbourne.
The announcement builds on the news from earlier this month that Berkshire Hathaway agreed to pay A$500 million ($388 million) for a stake in Insurance Australia Group Ltd. as part its expansion in the region. The company will get a 3.7 percent stake in the Sydney- based firm through a placement of new shares.
New Zealand Team
BHSI also said it had received its license from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and is underwriting property and casualty insurance through its new office in Auckland.
Peter Eastwood, global president and chief executive officer of BHSI, said the firm is opening its doors in Auckland with a highly experienced team, one headed by Country Manager Cameron McLisky.
McLisky joined BHSI with two decades of industry experience, most recently serving as regional Financial Lines manager at AIG Asia Pacific. Before that he was regional offices manager at AIG UK Ltd and Financial Lines manager at both AIG Australia and AIG New Zealand. He was also with Gen Re in Auckland.
BHSI’s other appointments in New Zealand include:
Other members of BHSI’s New Zealand underwriting team include Karen Poching and Ian Marshall, both senior underwriters, Financial Lines, and Nikki Quain, senior underwriter, Property. Jessica Jefferies is underwriting assistant.
In addition, BHSI said it can offer Marine Cargo in New Zealand, with Australia-based Mark Dixon also having New Zealand responsibility.