Reinsurance News

Africa Specialty Risks secures multi-year binder capacity with GIC and Peak Re

15th February 2021 - Author: Luke Gallin

Newly launched Pan-African focused reinsurer, Africa Specialty Risks Group (ASR), has secured additional multi-year binder capacity of up to $25 million per risk via a new partnership with GIC of India and Hong Kong domiciled Peak Re.

africa-specialty-risksASR is now able to offer capacity across Property, Political Risk, Trade Credit, and Energy lines of business, and will be expanding its current line up to include Political Violence and Terrorism, Liability, Construction, and Parametric covers for its clients.

In order to support its business across the continent, the company has also established a fully licenced reinsurance company in Mauritius.

ASR was launched by Helios Investment Partners in partnership with Mikir Shah, former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of AXA Africa Specialty Risks and Brian Howett, the former CEO of Old Mutual’s Pan-African reinsurance business.

CEO of ASR, Shah, commented: “We will support insureds during the economic downturn by providing adequate cover, and through proficient client service, we will look to form strong, long-term relationships. Securing additional capacity could not come at a more meaningful time for ASR. Following our launch mid-Pandemic in September 2020, we have seen an industry-wide reduction in available capacity as traditional underwriters withdraw from emerging markets to focus on their more developed domestic markets.

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“Securing multi-year capacity through our strong international partners is a testament to our robust business plan which will provide long-term security. At ASR we will focus on portfolio resilience which will form our core strength, and diversification to cater for a wide range of business lines cementing our long-term commitment to the African markets.”

ASR is looking to develop a dynamic and versatile business of scale and will deploy an innovative, forward thinking strategy as it looks to capture a portion of this expanding marketplace. The company notes that its data analytical approach will allow for faster and more accurate decisions.

Souleymane Ba, a Partner at Helios, said: “ASR has been established to supply specialist expertise and address the capacity gap present in Africa by providing customer-focused risk mitigation products. We are delighted that ASR has secured further risk capacity to support the African markets. Private equity has a long and successful track record of stepping up to fill unmet insurance capacity, allowing it to de-risk and support investment activity. We are very pleased to be backing ASR on its journey.”

The new reinsurance group accesses its binders out of its underwriting centre in London, and is supported by the recently launched operations in Mauritius. The firm’s underwriters will work across key territories in the region, delivering their expertise at a local level.

ASR is funded via Helios Investors IV, L.P., whose investors include Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) and International Finance Corporation (IFC).

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