UK insurance executives have taken another step toward developing a public-private risk-financing mechanism for future pandemics with the creation of working groups to take the idea from the drawing board to an operating company.

So-called “Pandemic Re,” which was first launched in April as a steering group, has now formed a project committee with six working groups, supported by more than 50 volunteers from leading insurance brokers, insurers and reinsurers, management consultants, data modelers, the medical profession and academia. A further 65 have volunteered their or their organization’s help.

At the same time, the Corporation of Lloyd’s has agreed to provide resources to two of the work streams.

The six working groups (or work streams), and their leaders follow:

  • Customer Engagement and Distribution, chaired by Julie Page (CEO of Aon UK Ltd.) with Chris Lay (CEO Marsh UK & Ireland) as deputy
  • Technical Insurance, chaired by Steve Coates (chief underwriting officer of Pool Re)
  • Modelling and Data, chaired by Paul Jardine (chairman of Asta and Chaucer)
  • Scheme Structure/Operating Models, chaired by Michael Dawson (active underwriter of Chaucer’s Nuclear Syndicate 1176)
  • Pandemic Preparedness and Mitigation, chaired by William (Bill) Marcoux (senior corporate lawyer)
  • Legal, Regulatory and Government Affairs, chaired by Amber Rudd (former senior politician).

Pandemic Re is following the template set by the UK’s government-backed terrorism mutual Pool Re, which was set up in 1993 to provide a disaster risk-financing mechanism for terrorism risks. A similar solution is being discussed for the European Union.

Pandemic Re’s original steering group comprises: Stephen Catlin (chairman and CEO, Convex); Maurice Tulloch (CEO of Aviva); Stephen Hester (CEO RSA); Julian Enoizi (CEO Pool Re); Nick Frankland (UK CEO Reinsurance Solutions, Aon); James Nash (CEO, International, Guy Carpenter), and James Kent (CEO Willis Re). Since the group’s inception in April, Jon Dye, chairman of the Association of British Insurers and CEO of Allianz Insurance, also has agreed to join the steering group.

Michael Dawson (of Chaucer and the Scheme Structure/Operating Models working group) will chair the project committee and liaise with Pandemic Re’s steering group. The project committee will include the working group leaders listed above, and Martin Hattrell (formerly senior corporate lawyer at Slaughter and May).

“The Steering Committee has made considerable progress by identifying working groups and business leaders to direct them as well as helping to determine the detailed activities for each work stream. I would like to thank all these volunteers for giving their time to this project,” said Catlin in a statement.

“We have a significant task ahead although we have received enormous levels of industry support. The insurance industry is collaborative by nature and with this highly experienced group, we hope to be able to deliver a structure in a relatively short time frame,” said Dawson, chairman of the project committee.

“We have been following closely discussions on a number of different possible approaches to providing cover for future losses from pandemic risks,” commented Dave Matcham, chief executive of the International Underwriting Association (IUA).

“I am pleased that Pandemic Re has been able to gain support for its work from many volunteers across our industry. Many IUA members are represented in the working groups that are being formed to examine different aspects of the issue and the association looks forward to providing additional support,” Matcham added.

“This backing clearly demonstrates our sector’s commitment to helping mitigate risk and finding more effective recovery solutions,” he said.

Organizations represented in Pandemic Re’s working groups follow:

  • Academia / research: Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies and Imperial College
  • Insurance brokers: Aon; Gallagher; Hyperion; Marsh and Willis Towers Watson
  • Consulting/advisory: Deloitte; KPMG; Oliver Wyman and PWC
  • Data: Dun & Bradstreet; Mastercard; Metabiota; Risk Management Solutions and Verisk
  • Industry associations: Association of British Insurers (ABI); British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA); Confederation of British Industry (CBI); Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) and London Market Group (LMG)
  • Re/insurers: Allianz; Asta; Aviva; AXA; Chaucer; Chubb; Convex; Ecclesiastical; Flood Re; Hiscox; Lloyd’s; Munich Re; Pool Re; RSA; Swiss Re and Zurich
  • Legal firms: Arnold & Porter; Clifford Chance and Herbert Smith
  • Medical: National Health Service

Source: Pandemic Re and International Underwriting Association

*This story ran previously in our sister publication Insurance Journal.

Topics COVID-19