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Alight, the former outsourcing business that Aon in February 2017 sold to private equity firm Blackstone, in June 2017 re-emerges as a standalone firm. Chris Michalak, CEO of Alight Solutions: “We are using this opportunity to ignite an entrepreneurial spirit and a culture focused on innovation to help companies and their people meet their rapidly changing benefits, HR and financial needs. […] we believe that businesses are powered by

The Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators (CCIR) in late May 2017 released its Travel Health Insurance Products Position Paper detailing final recommendations to the issues it identified in travel health insurance, to enhance consumer protection and confidence, including: Development of common standardized definitions and terminology Improvements to the application, screening and claims process Simplifying and improving disclosure documents Ensuring adequate controls and oversight mechanisms are in place throughout the

In a letter addressed to leaders in the United States’ House of Representatives and shared with all House and Senate members, the American Academy of Actuaries’ Individual and Small Group Markets Committee and Medicaid Subcommittee in April 2017 provided an actuarial perspective on the American Health Care Act (AHCA). The analysis examines the effects on enrollment and on the risk pool of the AHCA’s replacement of the individual mandate

Aetna International, a subsidiary of Aetna, in May 2017 announced the redesign of Health Hub, its health care benefits secure member portal, after an extensive review of the service. The redesign allows users to search for information about a subscriber’s health, and allows subscribers to have secure access to their insurance and healthcare needs from any location. Members can view their plan details, access claim records, and search for

With growing global uncertainties, there is an increased demand for a way to reach traveling employees anywhere, at any time, and this was the driving force behind a new Active Monitoring service, offered by HX Global as an add-on to Concur’s Integrated Traveller Risk Management Solution, that is designed to help companies manage employee safety. The integrated Traveller Risk Management Solution, unveiled by Concur in March 2017 at Concur

IPMI provider Now Health International in May 2017 announced that, after a comprehensive product review, they are offering significant changes to their flagship WorldCare product. The enhanced version of WorldCare will include a simplified annual deductible structure, higher benefit limits, and new added value services in response to feedback from its members and distribution network. Key enhancements include: Simple annual deductible Now based on a new deductible structure rather

Aon Benfield, the global reinsurance intermediary and capital advisor of Aon plc, in May 2017 announced the launch of its PathWise Solutions Group business solutions package, bringing the integrated enterprise High Performance Computing (HPC) business platform within compliance for IFRS 17 standards for insurance contracts. This standard requires companies to significantly enhance their valuation systems and processes; specifically in areas such as data management, model management, and computational power

CSA Travel Protection, a travel insurance provider, in May 2017 began rebranding to Generali Global Assistance as part of a wider program to rebrand several Europ Assistance business lines in the United States to Generali Global Assistance (GGA). Products and solutions carrying the CSA Travel Protection name will transition over time, while retaining and enhancing offerings and services to customers. As GGA, they will be able to offer a

Lemonade, the New York City-based insurtech company in April 2017 announced a strategic investment by Allianz, the world’s largest insurance company. Details of the investment have not been disclosed. Solmaz Altin, Chief Digital Officer at Allianz, cited the company’s commitment to staying at the cutting edge of insurance and to helping Lemonade expand throughout the U.S. and internationally. Allianz already had invested in several thought leadership initiatives, such as

MAXIS Global Benefits Network (MAXIS GBN), a global joint venture between MetLife and AXA, in April 2017 announced the launch of its new website, client portal, and member portal as part of the firm’s extensive investment in its digital infrastructure. The new site has revised content about MAXIS GBN’s network, solutions, and thought leadership. The latter includes the new, monthly, Viewpoint series, webinars, and health and wellness white-papers. The

Some ten months after selecting its key service providers, European cross-border pension plan RESAVER is poised to begin operations in March 2017. A brainchild of the European Commission, RESAVER is a pension plan specially designed for highly mobile researchers working at public and private research institutions and universities, SMEs, and research and technical development companies. It is advised by Aon Hewitt; BlackRock won the initial investment management mandate; and

Aetna International is expanding into the Canadian market to provide tailored coverage for expatriate clients. With the main office in Toronto, Aetna expects to open additional offices throughout 2017 and is actively hiring staff to fill key roles. Carrie Chapman in September 2016 was appointed country manager for Canada, reporting to Richard di Benedetto, president and CEO of Aetna International. The plans offered by Aetna will cover everyone whether

While publication of solvency ratios for the insurance industry is not a requirement, many companies do publish this information as part of their risk appetite and financial targets. The E.U. solvency regime, called Solvency II, also allows countries operating outside the E.U., ‘third country insurers’, to operate and comply with E.U. rules. The chart, compiled by Guy Carpenter, a Marsh & McLennan company, and published in February 2017, shows

Results of the Deloitte Global Chief Procurement Officer Survey 2017 point to reducing costs in the face of global uncertainty as the biggest priority Chief Procurement Officers (CPOs) face. Eighty-four percent of the CPOs surveyed in North America said that managing risks is the second highest priority, indicating that they are taking a cautious approach at a time when risks include weakness and volatility in emerging markets and rising

In response to the urgent call for new vaccines to treat emerging infectious diseases, the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, established a global coalition in January 2017 that is committed to developing safe and effective vaccines against known infectious disease threats. Buoyed by an initial investment of US$460m from the governments of Germany, Japan, and Norway, plus investments from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wellcome

Humanis, a large French group insurance carrier, since 2013 has published a yearly survey of French expatriates. Here are some key takeaways from the January 2017 edition: French expats like living abroad, and 95% of them would recommend that their friends give expatriation a try. 64% of French expats do not expect to return home in the next five years.   39% of French expats would like to create

The March 31, 2017 imposition of Article 50 has nervous Britons rushing to transfer their final salary pensions into overseas schemes. According to deVere Group, a large independent financial advisory organization, the percentage of inquiries about transferring pensions has risen 21% since the beginning of December. While there has been interest since the Brexit vote in June 2016, the surge to transfer pensions overseas intensified during December and promises

Following the successful conclusion in January 2017 of the bilateral agreement on insurance and reinsurance between the European Union and the U.S., industry body Insurance Europe welcomed the deal, supporting in particular the removal of the discriminatory collateral requirements that E.U. reinsurers were subject to when placing business in the U.S.. This change is expected to support bilateral trade in insurance and reinsurance. However, the National Conference of Insurance

Amsterdam, The Netherlands-based sleep expert Els van der Helm, PhD,  in November 2016 launched her new website, www.elsvanderhelm.com, that includes resources such as videos, brief articles and Els’s academic research. Prior to her own consulting firm, Els worked as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company. There she combined her passion for leadership development and sleep management. She developed and facilitated training programs for both McKinsey consultants and clients.

The European Commission in October 2016 conducted hearings with pension funds, asset managers, insurance undertakings, individuals, consumer associations, and public authorities  to debate the need for a pan-European pension product. The panel debates allowed stakeholders to determine if EU action fostering the emergence of European personal pension products is appropriate as well as proportionate. At stake are simple, affordable, and transparent pension plans that provide better returns. More investment

General Electric (GE) in September 2016 has had its European pension fund approved by FSMA, Belgium’s financial supervisory authority and the regulatory body for pension funds. GE is encouraging its existing European-based pension plans to join the fund, which takes the legal form of an Organisme de Financement de Pensions (OFP), Belgium’s IORP-compliant vehicle for pensions provisions. At this early stage, a management committee has been appointed. An IORP

Auto manufacturer BMW in September 2016 decided to end both of its UK final salary-defined benefit (DB) pension plans. Both plans will cease future accrual as of June 2017, affecting around 5,000 members total. Citing significant pension fund shortfalls and the cost risks associated with DB plans, BMW explained that their plans are increasingly unsustainable and unaffordable for both the company and the pension plans members. Unite, the union

Tokio Marine Life Insurance Singapore (TMLS) and Henner Group in June 2016 announced that they have joined forces to launch an international medical coverage solution for globally mobile employees based in Singapore. Henner is a French firm specialized in employee benefits and one of the largest and best-known TPAs in the international private medical insurance market where it was previously known as GMC. The partnership allows TMLS and Henner

The Health Insurance Group in September 2016 introduced a global and expatriate Employee Assistance Program (EAP) that provides help and support to people working abroad who are in crisis or need. Partnering with Morneau Shepell, the leading provider of integrated health and productivity solutions in Canada, The Health Insurance Group, located in the United Kingdom, offers a comprehensive suite of international assistance programs, including worldwide EAP, to help employees

Travel insurance and assistance services are quickly gaining favor among travel professionals who work for companies that provide them. A new study, “Assessing the Prevalence and Value of Travel Insurance and Assistance Services”, published in September 2016 by the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) and AIG Travel, reveals that 95 percent of travel professionals feel that providing insurance or assistance services to employees is a valuable benefit for those

HealthMine, a healthcare technology company based in Dallas, Texas, in August 2016 released the results of a study revealing that the majority (62%) believe that all health care plan participants should join a wellness program to help them lower their health care costs. 32% responded that wellness programs helped them reduce the number of sick days logged, and 33% said their wellness program helped them be more productive at

Expatriates and Emiratis in the United Arab Emirates have seen changes to their health insurance programs as of July 1, 2016. These changes will affect only those under the Abu Dhabi Basic Plan who seek treatment at a private hospital under the Thiqa plan for Emiratis, expatriates, and their families. Procedures at government hospitals are unaffected. Thiqa, the Arabic word for “trust,” is a UAE national insurance initiative delivered