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BMS appoints Gilles Bonvarlet as Non Executive Director

BMS Group Ltd. (“BMS”) today announces the appointment of Gilles Bonvarlet as Non Executive Director, subject to regulatory approvals. He joins the company’s board of directors led by recently appointed Chairman, John Hastings-Bass.

Mr. Bonvarlet has over 25 years of experience in the international (re)insurance markets. He joined Brockbank Group in 1994 and following the acquisition by XL Group became Managing Director of XL London Market Ltd. until 2004. He then joined Talbot Holdings Ltd as Chief Operating Officer until 2009.

Mr. Bonvarlet is currently a Non Executive Director of Amlin Underwriting Ltd. and Xchanging Insure Services, as well as the Chairman of One Re Ltd. He has also served as a Non Executive Member of the Lloyd’s Market Board.

BMS Group CEO, Nick Cook, said:

“It’s my great pleasure to welcome Gilles to BMS, his extensive knowledge of the insurance and reinsurance markets will be invaluable to our business. Gilles’ appointment demonstrates that we are determined to attract the market’s top talent as we continue to develop and strengthen our global footprint.”

Commenting on his appointment, Gilles Bonvarlet added:

“I am delighted to be joining BMS. The BMS brand is synonymous with high quality, independent and innovative brokerage, matched with technical expertise and an understanding of both the traditional and alternative capital markets. I look forward to playing my part in the company’s development as one of the world’s leading independent brokers.”

BMS appoints Erin Vaccaro as Vice President

BMS Intermediaries Inc. (“BMS”), the independent risk and advisory firm, today announces the appointment of Erin Vaccaro as Vice President of its Philadelphia based Property and Casualty Treaty reinsurance division, reporting to John Faustman, Executive Vice President.
Erin joins BMS from Guy Carpenter, where she served as Vice President. During her eight year tenure at Guy Carpenter, Erin worked in both the Philadelphia and London offices across global Property, Casualty, Workers Compensation and Personal Accident treaty accounts. She is a graduate of the Temple University, Fox School of Business and Management, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration, majoring in both Finance and Risk Management and Insurance.

John Faustman, Executive Vice President of BMS, said:

“I’m very pleased to welcome Erin to BMS’ Philadelphia offices. She joins our existing team who are dedicated to providing clients with a highly responsive service and market leading technical expertise. This is an aptitude that Erin has demonstrated throughout her career and she will make an excellent addition to the team.”

Erin Vaccaro said:

“I’m very excited to be joining BMS, whose brand is synonymous with sustainable growth, outstanding customer service and innovation in the face of complex client requirements. I look forward to getting to know the team and being a part of the company’s leading Property and Casualty reinsurance account.”

BMS Intermediaries CEO Andrew Bustillo has highlighted the importance of reinvention for reinsurers as the market continues to evolve

BMS Intermediaries CEO Andrew Bustillo has highlighted the importance of reinvention for reinsurers as the market continues to evolve, in Insider Quarterly’s Walk the Talk profile. The article discusses the positive culture and collaborative approach of BMS Inc., BMS Group, Minova and Pioneer Underwriters. Growth in facilities, particularly for challenging risks such as cyber and terrorism are also a focal point.

Download full article (pdf)

BMS Group CEO Nick Cook featured among a number of broker CEOs in the latest edition of Insurance Insider.

BMS Group CEO Nick Cook featured among a number of broker CEOs in the latest edition of Insurance Insider. ‘Lost Civilisations’ focuses on the challenges facing mid-tier brokers and how companies, including BMS Group are diversifying to remain competitive and continue to grow.

Download full article (pdf)

BMS Canada Risk Services launches Lions Gate Underwriting and appoints Shaun Johnston as Managing Director

Vancouver, Canada – BMS Canada Risk Services (“BMS Canada”) the Canadian arm of the independent specialist insurance and reinsurance broker BMS Group Ltd., today announces the launch of a specialist MGA Lions Gate Underwriting.

Lions Gate will commence underwriting immediately specializing in the following lines:

• Travel Medical Insurance
• Accident & Sickness
• War Risk & Terrorism Insurance
• Construction including annual and project specific coverages
• Professional Liability
• Cyber/Privacy
• Personal Lines
• Commercial General Liability & Umbrella Liability
• Residential and Commercial Property
• Large open-market risks

Lions Gate Underwriting is a leading Lloyd’s coverholder and underwrites on behalf of large A rated global insurers. Our products are distributed through licensed Canadian insurance brokers.

Shaun Johnston, who will be based in the company’s headquarters in Vancouver, has been appointed as Managing Director and holds national responsibility for the MGA including the Ontario presence.

Brian Gomes, CEO of BMS Canada, said:

“I am delighted to announce Shaun’s appointment and the re-launch of our MGA business. When we started looking for a Managing Director to Lions Gate, we knew that we needed someone with experience growing businesses and with an excellent knowledge and perspective on the current marketplace. Shaun’s experience stood out to us immediately and his track record in the provision of advisory, programme design and placement services for large complex projects as well as his market network will prove to be invaluable as we grow Lions Gate across Canada.”

Shaun Johnston, Managing Director of Lions Gate and COO of BMS Canada, said:

“This is a very exciting time for Lions Gate as we invest in key personnel and innovative product development. We are now at the next step in our strategic planning towards becoming the go-to business for specialized industries facing risks that require bespoke insurance solutions. We are better positioned than ever to fully service client requirements and our specialist, dedicated teams are ready to do business across the country. I’m greatly looking forward to announcing the various strategic developments over the coming months.”

BMS Continues customer driven innovation with launch of new iVision Hazard Module

BMS Intermediaries today announces the latest enhancement to iVision, its award winning catastrophe risk management system, that includes a new Hazard Module with storm surge features to support heightened user experience and functionality.

The new Hazard Module consolidates the extensive hazard map layers already available to iVision users with storm surge inundation heights above ground level, as defined by the National Hurricane Center’s Sea, Lake and Overland Surges from Hurricanes (SLOSH) model for category 1-4 hurricanes. The ability to visualize these storm surge hazard layers benefits users in their portfolio accumulation management, growth strategies, underwriting and rating territory evaluation.

“iVision’s latest enhancements, which were implemented following feedback from our clients, continues to demonstrate our commitment to providing innovation to suit their business requirements. In line with the start of the 2015 hurricane season, the new storm surge and hazard module features empower our clients making them better equipped than ever to prepare for severe weather events.”,

says Julie Serakos, Head of Cat Analytics for BMS Intermediaries, Inc.
iVision, part of a suite of analytical tools and services offered by BMS, is an easy-to-use catastrophe risk management system that is accessed via the internet. Built on the latest GIS technologies, it helps today’s insurance companies reduce cost and increase efficiency when managing their catastrophic risk.

BMS Group Launches Miami hub; Jose Astorqui Named as CEO, BMS Latin America

BMS Group Limited (“BMS”), the independent specialist insurance and reinsurance broker, today announces the launch of its Miami Hub with the appointment of Jose Astorqui to the newly created role of Chief Executive Officer, BMS Latin America.

The new Miami office is part of BMS’s stated strategy to expand its proposition in selective international markets. BMS sees an attractive opportunity for growth in the region and will use Miami as its base to service business from Latin America, Central America and the Caribbean.

Reporting to Nick Cook, BMS CEO, Jose Astorqui will join BMS from Howden Insurance Brokers later in the year once his contractual obligations to Howden have been fulfilled. Jose has a strong track record of managing a portfolio across the region and has been based in Miami as Howden’s Director of Latin America since 2008.

Nick Cook commented:

“BMS are delighted to have secured a candidate of Jose’s calibre to lead our new Miami office. His experience will help accelerate our presence in the region as we seek to capitalise on Latin America’s rapid economic growth. The opportunities in this region are complementary to our growth strategy and Jose’s appointment is another exciting development for BMS.”

Jose Astorqui added:

“BMS have a compelling vision for growth and I am honoured to have been asked to lead their new venture in the region.”

BMS Capital Advisory, Inc. appoints Bustillo as a principal

New York, NY – BMS Capital Advisory, Inc. has named Andrew Bustillo, President & CEO of BMS Intermediaries, as a Principal of the firm effective immediately. Currently serving as the Chairman of the board of directors of BMS Capital Advisory, Inc., Mr. Bustillo will, in his new leadership role, leverage his extensive network among (re)insurance underwriters, risk distributors and capital providers to originate and execute opportunities in the marketplace.

Together, BMS Capital Advisory and BMS Intermediaries offer clients access to the resources needed to achieve their strategic goals through reinsurance transactions or access to the capital markets. “We firmly believe in providing integrated solutions to our clients within a dynamic insurance marketplace.” Rom Braga, BMS Capital Advisory’s CEO said, “and having an industry veteran like Andrew as a Principal of our firm increases our ability to deliver tangible industry experience on each and every mandate.”

Mr. Bustillo commented: “At BMS, we have embraced the convergence of the (re)insurance and capital markets, and have an unwavering commitment of securing capacity required by our clients and prospects from the most cost-effective source. Operationally, we will continue to promote a disciplined and integrated strategy by breaking down internal silos, facilitating the flow of proprietary intellectual capital, and ultimately delivering the associated benefits and customized solutions to our customers.”

Mr. Bustillo holds an MBA in Finance & International Business from NYU Stern School of Business and graduated from Middlebury College with a BA in Economics & Spanish. He is married with three children. He is Chairman of the Board of Covenant House International, the largest privately funded provider of support to homeless and trafficked youth in the Americas.

BMS appoints John Hastings-Bass as Non-Executive Chairman

John Hastings-Bass, former Gallagher Chairman of International Development and JLT Group director, has been appointed Non-Executive Chairman and director of BMS, subject to regulatory approval. He will also chair the BMS Risk and Compliance committee. John has over 35 years’ experience in the insurance and reinsurance sectors.

He succeeds Christopher Hopton who remains Chairman of Minova Insurance Holdings, the London based insurance group that owns BMS Group.

BMS Group CEO, Nick Cook, said:

“John’s appointment to lead our board is another exciting development for BMS. He brings with him extensive industry knowledge, an unmatched level of global market insight and a track record of providing strategic counsel to growing businesses. I look forward to working with him as we make headway into 2015 and have no doubt that he will be instrumental and invaluable in our ongoing strategic planning and development. Everyone at BMS joins me in thanking Christopher Hopton for his support and wise counsel during a period of considerable development for BMS.”

Commenting on his appointment, John Hastings-Bass added:

“ I am very excited about joining this vibrant business. Nick and the BMS team have a clear strategy to take advantage of the significant opportunities in the market place. With the support of our shareholder, Minova Insurance Holdings, we have the financial resources to continue to strengthen BMS in our chosen markets.”

John began his career in Hong Kong with Jardine Matheson in 1976, later moving to London where he was PLC Director, Business Development of Jardine Insurance Brokers (JIB), working with the CEO to develop the corporate strategy that resulted in JIB’s 1997 merger with Lloyd Thompson to form Jardine Lloyd Thompson. In 1997, he became Group Board Director, CEO International Business Group, leading JLT’s strong growth across the UK, Australia and New Zealand, Asia, Europe, North and Latin American markets.

He joined Arthur J. Gallagher (“AJG”) in 2007, as Chairman, International Development, leading the Asia Pacific business. During his time with AJG, John was Chairman of AJG’s international energy business, Alesco and led the successful restructuring of the company’s Australian business and the creation of a Singapore office. He became MD, Underwriting & Development in 2013 before stepping down from the company at the beginning of 2015.

John remains Non-Executive Chairman of Novae Group plc, the leading property and casualty (re)insurance business operating at Lloyd’s.

BMS Group grows Specialty Reinsurance Division with appointment of Steven Herbert as Director

BMS Group Limited (“BMS”), the independent specialist insurance and reinsurance broker, today announces the appointment of Steven Herbert as Director of its Specialty Reinsurance division, reporting to Andrew Hitchings, Managing Director.

Steven joins BMS from Cooper Gay & Co Ltd (“Cooper Gay”) where he was a Director of the Reinsurance division as well as Head of LMX and Offshore Energy. He began his career at EW Payne where he held various roles, later becoming Director of the Marine Reinsurance department. He has subsequently held senior positions at AJ Gallagher, the Park Group, and as a Director of AON’s Marine Reinsurance division.

Andrew Hitchings, Managing Director of BMS Specialty Reinsurance, said:

“I’m delighted to welcome Steven to the Specialty Reinsurance team. We see enormous potential in the specialty reinsurance market and Steven’s appointment demonstrates our commitment to this sector. His depth of understanding and experience will add value for our clients and play a key part in the division’s ongoing strategic development and growth.”