A round-up of the latest reinsurance stories online

Unfolding developments relating to Australia’s floods have had (re)insurers captivated since the beginning of the year. So it is of little surprise that our coverage of a turning point for reinsurers – the Brisbane River bursting its banks – got the most attention. It was at this point that reinsurers knew the losses would be big enough to hurt them.

Having been in the headlines a great deal in 2010, Switzerland burst back onto the collective consciousness of the reinsurance industry this year, with two stories from the country making the top five.

Canopius’s establishment of a Swiss reinsurance operation is further proof that the country is the new European hub of choice, particularly for Lloyd’s insurers. The story probably also gained attention because Canopius is a company with big plans – as its recent bid for rival Lloyd’s firm Omega has demonstrated. Readers are clearly keen to find out what the next chapter will be in the Canopius story.

Following private equity-owned Swiss reinsurer Glacier Re’s decision to close its doors, it seemed likely that it would be sold to a specialist run-off buyer. Readers’ curiosity about who that would be was piqued when Catalina Holdings chief executive Chris Fagan – who has kept a low profile of late – finally broke cover.

News that Aon Benfield chairman Charlie Cantlay will be leaving in April no doubt surprised a few people – he has been with the reinsurance broker for 35 years. While he’s not yet revealed his plans, readers must be wondering where he can go from here, having served at the world’s largest broker for so long.

Online Top Five

1. Reinsurers to be hit by flood claims

12,000 cubic metres per second from Brisbane River


2. Canopius to launch European reinsurer

Lloyd’s insurer jumps on Zurich bandwagon


3. Run-off firm buys Glacier Re

Transaction to close in Q1


4. Cantlay to quit Aon Benfield in April

Broker’s UK chairman exits after 35-year tenure


5. 2010 catastrophe insured losses top $37bn – Munich Re

Second highest number of nat cats in 30 years