Two years ago, Russell Group hosted a virtual roundtable discussion titled “Insuring the Uninsurable”, which concluded that corporate and insurance language needs to be aligned in order to cover the loss rather than discussing the cause of the loss.

Connected risk

In July 2022, Russell followed up with an event entitled “How the insurance industry can assist corporate connected risk needs?” According to the preamble for this event, for more than 30 years globalisation has created complex business relationships for the successful flow of trade around the world. This has enabled frictionless trade across the world but has also created contagion paths that expose the same trade to connected risk, as trade, risk and exposure are truly borderless.

The event panellists included:

  • Andreas Berger, CEO, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions
  • David Howden, CEO, Howden Group
  • Navaid Farooq, head of political risks and strategic risk solutions, Convex Insurance
  • James Straker-Nesbit, insurance manager, Virgin Atlantic
  • Lisa Coomber, senior group insurance manager, Vodafone
  • David Broughton, head of insurance risk, Centrica
  • Brendan Plessis, EVP, strategic distribution and development, Sompo International
  • Suki Basi, managing director, Russell Group

The panellists debated the geopolitical impacts and lessons of Ukraine and Covid-19, which have taught us that the (re)insurance industry must think outside of traditional industry silos, collaborate and use its imagination to create solutions which protect corporate balance sheets from the threat of connected risk. Those were the conclusions of an event involving some of the leading lights in the world of (re)insurance and risk management.

There is opportunity to synthesise (re)insurers’ and corporates’ needs, through the use of timely and granular exposure information. We need to combine all these needs into a whole, coherent market-wide approach.

We must build a new market whose individual participants’ combined reputation and capital strength can start to achieve tangible transformation. Russell coined the phrase connected risk some years ago. We are providing answers that aid our understanding of this concept, which is key to sustainable and successful operations.

The old ways of doing business are transforming – now is the time for imaginative solutions. To ensure future corporate viability, we need collaborative solutions that are outcome-based and fuelled by holistic data analytics. There is a requirement for a practical action plan whose purpose is to achieve tangible transformation that the market can sign up to. This event was the latest of a series of meetings designed to foster connected risk market collaboration. The main output of the event discussion resulted in 10 themes that the Russell Working Group, in partnership with a select group of insurance carriers and brokers, will explore in more detail going forward:

  1. (Re)insurers and corporates are siloed
  2. The talent gap
  3. Finding capital
  4. Delivering innovation to address capital risk
  5. Creating connected outcomes
  6. Aligning insurer solutions to business growth
  7. Climate change
  8. Need to rethink insurance
  9. How do we recognise the correct data?
  10. An approach that is shock resilient

In tomorrow’s article we will focus in more depth on these top 10 themes.

Following our event, we have produced a short report discussing some of the key themes. You can download a free copy here.

Suki Basi is managing director at Russell Group