Three Aspen Execs Depart, Others Promoted; UK MGA Placed in Runoff

May 14, 2019

Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd. disclosed the departure of some veteran executives and the promotion of a number of others as part of a broad revamp of its leadership and operations. The Bermuda-based insurer and reinsurer also placed its UK managing general agency in runoff and closed its Dublin office.

Aspen said that Kate Vacher, who was most recently group director of Underwriting and CEO of Aspen Bermuda Ltd., is leaving “to pursue personal interests.” She had been with Aspen since 2002 and served “multiple roles” at the company over that time.

Also, David Schick, former group chief operating officer, and Donald Harrell, former head of International Insurance and global head of Marine, have departed “effective immediately to pursue opportunities outside Aspen,” Aspen said.

Mark Cloutier, executive chairman and group chief executive officer, said in prepared remarks that Aspen’s business “is well positioned thanks to their many contributions, and we wish them well in their future endeavors.”

Notice of Termination

The company said that Aspen Insurance UK Ltd. has served notice of termination of the its agency agreement with Aspen Risk Management Ltd. (ARML), which is a UK property and casualty managing general agent with a focus on UK mid-market companies.

Aspen said it expects that Aspen Risk Management will be placed into runoff and is working with the management of ARML to ensure all policyholder obligations and service requirements are fully supported and consistent with Aspen’s standards of policyholder and broker service.

The company emphasized the decision has no impact on its mainstream UK property and casualty business, Aspen Insurance UK Ltd.

Additionally, Aspen announced that it has begun the process of closing its Dublin office as a result of the proposed move of its Dublin Excess Casualty underwriting business to London. (Regarding business in the European Economic Area post-Brexit, Aspen intends to service customer needs through Lloyd’s of London’s Brussels subsidiary and other bespoke arrangements.)

“These decisions follow a review of our insurance strategy,” said a company representative in an emailed statement. “Aspen is focused on the ongoing enhancement of our Insurance business to ensure we are building value while continually providing the best services and products to our customers.”

Apollo Global Management LLC, the investment firm led by Leon Black, agreed to acquire Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd. for $2.6 billion in a deal that was announced in August 2018 and was completed in February 2019.

That ongoing strategic review also led the Aspen Insurance Holdings to stop underwriting property insurance on its Bermuda platform, a move it announced in February 2018, with the aim of moving away from major property accounts that contain considerable catastrophe exposure.

New Roles for Many Executives

Along with the Vacher, Schick and Harrell departures, Aspen also enacted a number of promotions of other executives. According to Cloutier, the leadership changes are part Aspen’s ongoing effort to improve operations and boost its ability to compete.

“It is essential we have the right talent to execute on our strategy, serve brokers and customers, and drive to enhance the long-term value of our business,” Cloutier said. “I am confident the leadership team, including the new members we are announcing today, is well equipped to meet the challenge of leading Aspen through its next chapter of change and profitable growth.”

Aspen’s leadership changes:

Source: Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd.

*Material from related Insurance Journal coverage was used for this story