Mr Riddell brings over three decades of experience in international insurance markets to his new role. He has served most recently as Regional Chairman – Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa for Zurich Insurance Group. Prior to this, he served as CEO and then Chairman of Zurich Global Corporate, overseeing a period of extensive growth. Mr Riddell joined Zurich from AIG where he held a series of senior managerial roles including Country Head of AIG France, CEO of AIG Belgium and President and Managing Director Hong Kong. He was previously a director of Pool Re, from February 2005 until August 2010.
Mr Riddell has also served as Chairman of the World Economic Forum Insurance Global Advisory Council, as Member of the ABI General Insurance Council and as a member of the Lord Mayor of London’s Advisory Board.
Anthony Latham, Chairman of Pool Re said, “Evolving terrorists’ methods and the fraught global geopolitical landscape pose a number of fundamental questions for the future of terrorism (re)insurance. To ensure that the Pool Re scheme can continue to adapt to mitigate an increasingly broad spectrum of terrorist tools and motivations requires the input of individuals with the requisite expertise to begin formulating responses to these complex questions. Throughout his career, Geoff has demonstrated an ability to break new ground and offer solutions that have propelled businesses forward, I am very pleased to welcome him to our board”.
Geoff Riddell, said “Pool Re has rapidly and comprehensively enhanced its proposition to reflect the needs of its members and stakeholders and in response to changes in the risk environment. Its terrorism insurance experience is second to none and I look forward to supporting it in its efforts to drive national and international terrorism insurance thinking and best practice”.
About Pool Re
The Pool Re scheme was set up in 1993 by the insurance industry in cooperation with the UK Government in the wake of the IRA bombing campaign on the UK Mainland. Pool Re is a mutual reinsurer whose Members comprise the vast majority of insurers and Lloyd’s Syndicates which offer commercial property insurance in the UK, with membership of the scheme affording them a guarantee which ensures that they can provide cover for losses resulting from acts of terrorism, regardless of the scale of the claims.
The scheme, which is recognised as a leading example of public/private partnership, is owned by its Members but is underpinned by a HM Treasury commitment to support Pool Re if ever it has insufficient funds to pay a legitimate claim. Pool Re pays a premium to Government for this guarantee and would repay the money over time if it ever used this facility.
However, in the event of a loss resulting from an act of terrorism, each Member must first pay losses up to a threshold, which is determined individually for that insurer. When losses exceed that threshold, the insurer can claim upon Pool Re’s reserves, which now stand at approximately £5.5billion. These reserves have been accumulated by the Members of Pool Re since its inception. It is only in the event that these reserves are exhausted that Pool Re would require Government support.
In the past 20 years, the Pool Re fund has paid out following 13 separate terrorism incidents covering losses of over £600m.