Kinesis assets under management up 20% year-on-year

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Assets under management held by Kinesis Capital Management, the collateralized retrocessional reinsurance unit of specialty re/insurer Lancashire Holdings Limited, grew its assets under management 20% year-on-year.

Lancashire’s Chief Underwriting Officer Paul Gregory said that the company was delighted with the support shown by the Kinesis investor base, helping it to increase its assets in time for the January reinsurance renewals.

Gregory explained, “Given the dislocation in the retro market we were able to grow Kinesis at 1/1. We were able to secure additional support from our investors which was pleasing given the recent losses.”

Bill calls on California to use re/insurance, ILS & ART for natural disasters

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A bill has been introduced that if enacted would authorise the California Governor, Insurance Commissioner, and Treasurer to purchase insurance, reinsurance insurance-linked securities (ILS) or other alternative risk transfer (ART) products to help pay costs resulting from natural disasters.

California is of course particularly exposed to major earthquake events, but it is since the two years of devastating wildfires that the conversation on disaster risk financing has moved forwards sufficiently to result in a bill calling on the State to better protect its finances and its citizens by transferring some of its disaster risks.

SB 290 has been introduced to the California legislature and if passed could result in the State becoming a purchaser of ILS or catastrophe bonds to hedge some of its exposure to losses from disaster events including earthquake, wildfires and flooding.

Nephila reapproved as Blackstone sub-advisor after Markel acquisition

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Nephila Capital, the largest investment fund manager of insurance-linked securities (ILS) and reinsurance linked assets, has been reapproved as a sub-advisor for a multi-strategy fund by asset management giant Blackstone.

Blackstone Alternative Asset Management, the hedge fund solutions group of Blackstone which has around $78 billion under management, had first added Nephila Capital as a sub-advisor to one of its multi-manager alternative investment funds back in 2013.

The firm then added Nephila to another of its alternative strategies, the Blackstone Alternative Multi-Strategy Fund, in 2015, as the asset management giant looked to deliver ILS returns as part of its alternatives platform using Nephila Capital’s expertise and deep reach into reinsurance and risk markets.

ILS business volumes to rise at Hannover Re in 2019: Henning Ludolphs

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Insurance-linked securities (ILS) related business volumes are expected to increase at reinsurance firm Hannover Re in 2019, part of which will be driven by the continued expansion of the sector, Henning Ludolphs believes.

Hannover Re has become increasingly active in the ILS sector, providing fronting and risk transformation services for collateralised reinsurance transactions, as well as for both cat bond lite and full 144a catastrophe bond transactions.

In 2018 the company worked on the issuance of a number of full catastrophe bond transactions, helping sponsors to access the capital markets for a source of reinsurance capital.

Open global trade remains the way ahead

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Senior official calls on nations to ‘inject new strength into the world economy’

China has called for an open global business environment and reiterated its commitment to further encourage outbound investment from capable domestic companies in accordance with international market principles and practices, a senior commerce official said on Tuesday.

Qian Keming, vice-minister of commerce, said the rise of protectionism in some countries has not only caused tightened security reviews of foreign investment, but also had an impact on Chinese businesses operating overseas.

Almaty region, bordering China, eyes expanding industry, trade and tourism

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ASTANA – In an exclusive interview with this newspaper, Akim (Governor) of Almaty oblast Amandyk Batalov shares his views on the region’s transformation from a formerly agrarian to a combined agrarian and industrial one, its efforts to attract tourists to its diverse destinations as well as its growing role as a key entry point into Kazakhstan from China as it implements its famed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

What socio-economic development issues are on the agenda? Are there plans to improve performance in the coming years? How much foreign investment did Almaty oblast attract in 2018 and could you tell us about the most significant projects?

Insurtech funding surges in 2018 as key players expand: Deutsche Bank

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Insurtech investment volumes increased by more than 60% between 2017 and 2018, while key players such as Lemonade and Amazon also expanded their operations over the year, according to analysts at Deutsche Bank.

Deutsche Bank data shows that insurtech investments (across all stages) totalled US $2.6 billion during the first three quarters of 2018, compared with $1.6 billion for the same period in the previous year.

This equated to an average $14 million investment per deal for the 184 deals transacted in 2018, versus $10 million per deal for the 152 recorded in 2017.

Schroders reorganises ILS structure with Lohmann at helm, hires Holliger

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The insurance-linked securities (ILS) business of global asset management group Schroders has been reorganised into a new structure, with Dirk Lohmann taking the Head of ILS role, and the investment firm has also announced a new hire in Beat Holliger.

Schroders aims to increase its focus on its different ILS products and strategies under the new organisational structure, to benefit its own decision-making and enhance client communication across the range.

In addition to his current role as Chairman & CEO of Secquaero Advisors Ltd., Dirk Lohmann has been appointed Head of ILS at Schroders, as an employee of Schroder Investment Management (Switzerland) AG.

Cat bond portfolios benefit from January price recovery

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Catastrophe bonds experienced a price recovery in January, promising to help cat bond funds and investors to a stronger month of returns following a quarter where active selling drove prices lower and the cat bond market’s total-return had suffered.

Some cat bond funds have reported better than 1% returns for the single month of January 2019, which is higher than a normal January’s performance for a portfolio of cat bonds would have been expected to achieve.

The rapid selling of catastrophe bonds through the final quarter of 2018 has been attributed to the need for ILS fund managers to free up capital for reinvestment into January reinsurance renewal transactions.

TWIA targets at least $2.1bn of reinsurance & cat bonds for 2019

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The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) will aim to secure at least $2.1 billion of protection from the global reinsurance and insurance-linked securities (ILS) market for the 2019 hurricane season, taking its total claims-paying capacity to at least $4.2 billion.

TWIA’s Board this week approved its staff to go to market and renew or purchase afresh whatever reinsurance and catastrophe bond coverage may be required to ensure it meets its target of coverage for a 1-in-100 year loss.

TWIA is the largely coastal residual market property insurer in the state of Texas, providing insurance to its clients in some of the most hurricane exposed regions of the United States.