The European Commission in August 2018 announced the names of the ten members of its recently established “High Level Group on [supplementary] pensions”. The mission of the group is “to provide policy advice to the Commission on matters related to ways of improving the provision, safety through prudential rules, inter-generational balance, adequacy and sustainability of supplementary (occupational and personal) pensions in light of the challenges in the Union and

Marsh & McLennan (MMC)’s health, wealth and career consulting arm Mercer in August 2018 acquired the investment consulting, alternatives consulting and wealth management operations of Pavilion Financial. Pavilion is a global investment services firm with about 300 employees, headquartered in Winnipeg, Canada. It has offices across North America, in London, U.K., and in Singapore. In the U.S., Pavilion focuses on the defined contribution (D.C.), endowment and foundation, healthcare and

Current Swiss Life Group Chief Risk Officer Matthias Aellig in March 2019 will take over as Group CFO. He then will also become a member of Swiss Life’s Corporate Executive Board, succeeding current CFO Thomas Buess who is taking on non-executive duties. Matthias Aellig studied physics at the University of Bern, Switzerland. After receiving his doctorate in the field of solar wind and completing a research visit at the

Employers with operations in the U.S. should not underestimate current difficulties in hiring workers. Gad Levanon, chief economist for North America at The Conference Board, in August 2018 commented on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment Situation Report. “The [U.S.] labor market is tightening with the unemployment rate declining by 0.1 percentage points and the broader U-6 measure dropping by 0.3 percentage points.” The U.S. unemployment rate fell

Issiah Sakhabuth in August 2018 joined Mercer as a Principal in the Multinational Client Group based in London. Issiah worked previously for Aon as a Principal Consultant in the International Retirement Practice and for KPMG as a Senior Manager in the Tax & Pensions Practice, after beginning her career as an actuarial trainee for Lloyds Banking Group. She has extensive experience in advising companies on their international retirement and

AIG in August 2018 announced the appointment of Thomas Lillelund as CEO of AIG Europe, based in Luxembourg and reporting to Chris Townsend, CEO, International General Insurance. He will be responsible for Continental Europe and Ireland. Anthony Baldwin, now CEO of AIG Europe Limited, will become CEO of AIG’s new UK entity, American International Group UK Limited, and will continue to report to Townsend. Headquartered in Luxembourg, AIG Europe

Conduent, itself a 2017 Xerox spinoff, in May 2018 announced and in August 2018 completed the spin-off of its consulting business formerly known as Buck Consultants. Private equity investment firm H.I.G. Capital acquired Conduent’s human resources consulting and outsourcing businesses in the U.K. and in Canada as well as its U.S. human resources consulting and actuarial business, forming again what once was actuarial firm Buck Consultants. The new-old firm

Zurich Canada in August 2018 appointed John Thain as Vice President, Travel, Accident & Sickness. He is based in Toronto and reports to Greg Irvine, head of Specialty Products for Canada. He will be responsible for launching personal leisure travel, business travel accident and supporting accident and sickness products in Canada. Zurich Canada expects to begin selling personal travel products by the start of 2019. According to Zurich, the

Zurich Insurance in August 2018 appointed Saad Mered as chief executive officer and chief agent of Zurich Canada, based in Toronto, Ontario. He will report to Zurich North America CEO Kathleen Savio. Zurich North America focuses on workers’ compensation, liability, property, specialty and F&I (finance and insurance); as well as life insurance and disability (in the United States only). It employs approximately 9,000 people out of the Zurich group

Aegon in August 2018 sold the last block of its life reinsurance business to French reinsurer Scor Global Life. Aegon’s U.S. subsidiary Transamerica will reinsure an additional USD 700 million of liabilities through Scor Global Life. In December 2017, Aegon had agreed to divest USD 750 million of life reinsurance liabilities to Scor. It also dissolved a related captive insurance company. Technically, Aegon’s Transamerica life subsidiaries reinsured about half

Financial Analyst – XYZ Benefits Consulting – Open Position EXAMPLE Central London, UK Apply before 15 November 2018 XYZ Benefits Consulting XYZ Benefits Consulting assists employers on occupational pension plans. We provide all services necessary for the design, implementation, and ongoing administration of Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit pension schemes. Our clients are accustomed to relying heavily on our technical expertise to run their plan in a way that

The liquidation of New Zealand insurer CBL and its Ireland-based European subsidiary, CBL Europe in February 2018, appears to have made ripples if not waves with the further voluntary liquidation of its subsidiary, Luxembourg-based broker/tied agent Securities & Financial Solutions Europe (SFS Europe) in July 2018, just 5 months later. SFS Europe specializes in the construction sector and was providing its services in France under the EU’s freedom of

French social protection group Apicil in August 2018 acquired Luxembourg-based individual life insurance carrier OneLife from its owner, U.S. private equity firm J.C Flowers. Apicil has a €2.4 billion turnover and specializes in health and life insurance, pensions, as well as savings and financial services. As a paritarian institution, Apicil is akin to a mutual that is co-managed by trade unions and employers’ representative bodies. Headquartered in Lyon, France,

Brokerage group Ascoma’s employee benefits unit, Ascoma EB, in August 2018 joined global employee benefits broker network IBN (International Benefits Network) as a member for Morocco, Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Cameroon, Gabon, Congo Brazzaville, and Congo DRC. Based in Monaco, Ascoma Group has 34 locations in 24 countries, including 22 in Africa, and more than 700 employees (600 in Africa). Ascoma was the first independent broker network in

CNA Hardy, a commercial insurer operating within the Lloyd’s market, in August 2018 was granted its insurance license by the Luxembourg regulator, Commissariat aux Assurances (CAA). It is to write business across continental Europe from Luxembourg through a network of offices in Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, but also through its Lloyd’s of London platform. The company had announced in June of 2017 that it would set

CFO Jörg Schneider to hand over to Christoph Jurecka at the end of 2018 Munich Re CFO Jörg Schneider in December 2018 will retire from Munich Re after more than 18 years on the Board. His successor Christoph Jurecka is 43 years old and comes from ERGO Group AG, Munich Re’s primary insurance subsidiary, where he served as CFO. Christoph Jurecka studied technical physics at the Technical University (TU)

Gallagher in July 2018 acquired employee benefits, group retirement, and individual insurance broker and consultant Belton Boisselle in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada). Belton Boisselle has clients across Western Canada, primarily in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The broker provides group benefit and retirement plans, individual life and living benefits, as well as investment strategies. Belton Boisselle president Roger Belton, president of group benefits and pensions Kasey Boisselle, and their associates will stay

Economic growth is picking up and unemployment has reached record lows in some OECD countries but wages continue to stagnate. Unless countries can break this cycle, public belief in the recovery will be undermined and labor market inequality will widen, according to a new report, published in July 2018 by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The OECD Employment Outlook 2018 states that the employment rate for

E.U. regulator EIOPA (the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority) in July 2018 announced the new composition of the Insurance and Reinsurance Stakeholder Group (IRSG) and the Occupational Pensions Stakeholder Group (OPSG). The two stakeholder groups are renewed every 30 months. The new rosters show a more balanced approach in regard to gender and national diversity as well to a diversity for different types of stakeholders. In total, 16

Broker APRIL UK in July 2018 announced that it is closing its private medical insurance (PMI) plans to new business and will be withdrawing from the UK PMI market. The announcement has been made following the decision by its insurance partner to stop bearing risks of its private medical insurance portfolio. As far as we know, the insurance partner in question is Malta-based Axeria Insurance, another member of the

British insurtech firm Bought By Many in July 2018 raised £15 million (approximately USD 20 million) when insurance broker Marsh announced it was investing in the peer-to-peer insurtech startup firm. Bought by Many’s concept is bringing together groups of insurance buyers via its online platform and getting better terms and/or perks from insurance carriers for these blocks of clients. To date, the website offers standardized coverage for individuals, sole

Collaborative Benefits Interview: J. Patrick Gallagher, Jr. and Leslie Lemenager Gut microbes are tiny sensors of your general health Eliminate the middlemen: The Bezos-Buffett-Dimon U.S. health care venture How does your body ‘burn’ fat? In praise of doing nothing 2018 IBIS Conference Report New Product: MAXIS Global Wellness – A Q&A with Dr. Leena Johns Luxembourg Pensions for Post-Brexit Workers

Employee retention and recruiting are hot topics in Germany today. But exactly which long-term benefits should be offered by employers to attract new employees in times of acute shortages of skilled workers? The August 7, 2018, “Zurich Employee Benefits Dialog” seminar will focus on these issues. Topics include the Income Protection Gap Study together with Oxford University, Brexit and the impact on HR, current trends in occupational pension provision

Zurich in July 2018 acquired Blue Insurance, a travel insurance intermediary in the U.K. and Irish markets. The acquisition was made through Zurich’s Cover-More subsidiary, which provides travel insurance and medical assistance services, for an estimated €70 million. Blue Insurance offers direct-to-consumer travel insurance distribution capabilities through online brands in the U.K. and Ireland. Blue Insurance will be part of Cover More’s Europe and UK business, led by Judith

Risk Strategies, a privately held U.S. brokerage and risk management firm, in July 2018 acquired Oxford Risk Management Group, a Sparks, Maryland-based provider of alternative risk and captive insurance and consulting. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Established in 2010, Oxford Risk Management Group specializes in conducting captive feasibility analysis, coordination and management of turn-key captive insurance company arrangements, both domestically and internationally. The company is led by