Torus Opens New Managing General Agency in Bermuda and Appoints Two Senior Casualty Professionals

Torus, the global specialty insurer, has established Torus (Bermuda) Services Ltd. as a Managing General Agent (MGA) in Bermuda for Torus Insurance (UK) Limited, to provide enhanced service to its customers, increase the depth of current product offerings and expand its distribution network. The MGA will develop and promote new casualty products for the local market and provide increased flexibility for clients and brokers when placing casualty business with its Bermuda underwriting platform, as they can now access either Torus Insurance (Bermuda) Ltd, or its excess and surplus lines eligible UK insurer, Torus Insurance (UK) Ltd. from a single location.

Lane A. Schaffer will assume the position of Senior Vice President, Torus (Bermuda) Services. Mr. Schaffer will be based in Bermuda and will report directly to David Perez, Torus’ President and Chief Underwriting Officer of Global Casualty, and President of Torus (Bermuda) Services Ltd.

The global casualty team has also expanded with the appointment of Mark St. Aoro as Global Casualty Product Line Executive. In this newly created position Mr. St. Aoro will be responsible for ensuring underwriting consistency and quality across the Torus casualty platforms worldwide, oversee the development of new products and IT infrastructure and maintaining all internal and regulatory compliance standards. Mr St. Aoro will report directly to Mr. Perez. He will be based in Torus’ New Jersey office.

Commenting on the launch of the new MGA and the additions to his team, Mr. Perez said: “The ability to design flexible products that respond to the individual needs of our clients while at the same time expanding our worldwide platform is a key strategic objective for Torus. The launch of Torus (Bermuda) Services Ltd. is a significant step in the execution of our business plan.

“Lane has extensive underwriting and management experience in North American lead umbrella casualty products and in-depth knowledge of the US tort environment. He brings a tremendous depth of technical experience to this facility.

“Mark, is a seasoned insurance executive who possesses both technical and strategic experience that will be invaluable to Torus in our continuing expansion in the US and around the world.”

Mr. Schaffer joins Torus from AIG where he most recently led the operations and strategic direction of a department charged with securing new and renewal business for Fortune 2000 accounts. Prior to AIG, he was a Partner at Evans & Clesi in New Orleans having begun his career in insurance defense in 1989 at Lobman, Carhahan & Batt.

Mr. St. Aoro joins Torus from C.V. Starr & Company where he was most recently responsible for the development of new product initiatives. Prior to C.V. Starr, he worked at Great American Insurance, Chubb and Zurich. At Zurich, he served as the Chief Compliance Officer for the Specialties Business Unit, and was the Line of Business Director for Specialty Products in North America.

Torus Construction Enters the United States

To help with the provision of local support services for brokers in North America, Torus, the global specialty insurer, has expanded its construction team with the appointment of Richard Girden to the position of Vice President, Senior Underwriter. Based in Torus’ new Chicago office, Mr. Girden will manage the team’s US portfolio and will report to London-based Senior Vice President, Head of Global Construction, Steven Norcliffe.

Mr. Girden brings over 30 years of insurance experience to Torus, 20 of which have been in construction underwriting. He was most recently President of Construction in the Goldman Sachs funded operation Vista Insurance Partners, prior to which he was SVP, Managing Director of Construction at Mercator Risk Services. He has also spent time as President of RLI Construction and as VP, Property Sales Executive at CNA.

Commenting on the new addition to his team, Mr. Norcliffe said: “Richard has close relationships with the majority of key construction brokers in the US and this will boost our efforts in building a truly global construction underwriting platform by offering a personalised service on both sides of the Atlantic. His wealth of experience, not only in underwriting, but also in broking and risk management, will certainly enhance our offerings for master builders risk programmes and for complex construction projects in North America.”

Mr. Girden added: “Currently there is a tremendous opportunity to capitalise on the US government’s stimulus plan for infrastructure, so it’s an exciting time to be joining a fast-growing and entrepreneurial company as part of one of the most respected underwriting teams in the market.”

Torus Expands Global Onshore Energy Team

Torus, the global specialty insurer, continues to build its onshore energy team with the appointments of Onshore Energy Underwriter, Amanda Ewen, and Risk Engineer, Mohammed Hanif. Based in London, each brings extensive global downstream expertise to the existing team and will report to Torus’ Head of Global Onshore Energy, Philip Sexton.

Miss Ewen joins Torus from Marsh where she was Vice President of the intermediary’s energy practice specifically focusing on oil, gas and petrochemical companies in the Middle East and North African region. Prior to Marsh, Miss Ewen spent seven years at Allianz as a Downstream Energy Underwriter.

Dr. Hanif was most recently at ARM Ltd, the risk management company of United Insurance Brokers (UIB), where he was Principal Risk Engineer. He has also worked at Attock Refinery Ltd, Universal Oil Products, Chemoxy International and British Nuclear Fuels.

Commenting on the new additions to the team, Mr. Sexton said: “Since Torus’ inception we have always sought to develop long term relationships with key energy companies and help them manage risk throughout the business cycle. Notwithstanding current global economic constraints, we believe there are great long-term opportunities within the energy industry. Attracting underwriting talent such as Amanda, and Mohammed’s engineering expertise, enhances our capabilities to offer the highest levels of service to our clients and their brokers as they seek to take advantage of those opportunities.”

Torus Launches Specialty Division

Torus has further expanded its offerings with the appointment of Dermot O’Donohoe as Chief Underwriting Officer of its new Global Specialty division and Chief Operating Officer of Torus in the UK & Continental Europe. The new division will initially offer D&O and Professional Indemnity insurance in all major geographies. Subject to regulatory approval, this will begin in Europe through the establishment of Torus’ European operations. In support of this new role, Marc van der Veer has been recruited as Chief Underwriting Officer for Specialty Europe and Managing Director of Torus’ European platform.

Subject to FSA approval, Mr. O’Donohoe will be appointed to the board of Torus’ UK insurer, Torus Insurance (UK) Limited and will report directly to Torus’ Chief Executive, Clive Tobin. Mr. O’Donohoe has over 25 years’ underwriting experience and was a former member of the Council of Lloyd’s. He joins Torus from XL, where he was most recently Chief Underwriting Officer of XL Insurance’s global specialty operations and CEO of its London market operations.

Mr. Van der Veer, who has 15 years of Specialty Insurance experience, joins Torus from Hiscox Europe. Prior to Hiscox, where he was Managing Director for four years, he was Head of XL Capital’s Professional Lines division for Continental Europe.

Mr. O’Donohoe said: “We have ambitious plans to build a significant speciality business and it is great to be a part of that from the start. While we will initially focus on Professional Lines and D&O in the US, UK and Europe, our overall strategy is to position Torus as a leading global specialty carrier in all the main specialty classes worldwide, and we will build a strong team of experienced professionals to accomplish this.”

Mr. Van der Veer said: “There are considerable opportunities in Europe from which we will capitalise on by being physically present on the Continent, and we’re currently appointing local underwriters. Importantly, while there is a growing lack of capacity for financial institutions, this is not something that we are ruling out.”

Mr. Tobin added: “Dermot is a well known London market figure and both he and Marc will be great assets to Torus. Their appointments are further examples of the great talent that Torus has been able to attract worldwide to build a strong multiline insurance company.”