JLT Re, the reinsurance arm of broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson, has opened a new office in Basel, Switzerland.

The move, which follows JLT Re's acquisition of rival broker US Re's Basel-based treaty reinsurance portfolio and assets, marks the company's entry into the life reinsurance business.

The new branch will be headed by Mark Lucas, who established US Re's Basel branch, and was responsible for production and placement of European non-life and life reinsurance business into the world market as well as product development.

"Basel will give JLT Re a base from which to expand in all areas of reinsurance into mainland Europe and extend our relationships with our European International network colleagues," said JLT Re chairman Alan Griffin in a statement.

Rival broker Willis Re made its life reinsurance debut last month.