Built differently

Freddie Porritt, London market reinsurance and retro broker at BMS Re, explains how the firm’s reinsurance offering is designed to be different.

What are the challenges and opportunities within property and specialty reinsurance?

The challenges vary depending on where you look. In specialty, there is a lack of alignment around terms and conditions. This will be a focus of renewal discussions this year.

There were well-documented challenges on the property reinsurance and retro side, but the market seems to have a more consistent message in the build-up to this renewal season. Retentions and coverage were the focus of last year’s discussions. With retentions moving up this has meant that losses from non-modelled perils such as severe convective storms have been retained net, which has been a challenge for some.

Fortunately, we’ve had success turning challenges into opportunities. Our unique way of sourcing capital means we have been able to showcase our added value and support to our clients during this hard cycle. This is important to help us stand out in such a competitive market.

Given BMS Re is growing so quickly, how important is culture to the group?

It is a very exciting time to be part of BMS Re. We are growing rapidly, and the investment from Eurazeo is key to our plans to build the specialty broker of choice. When I joined the business in 2021, there were 400 people – today there are more than 1,200. Such growth is fantastic, but it is vital we preserve our culture. Culture is first and foremost to the business. We are all shareholders in the business, which means we are aligned with our clients. Success for our client means success for the business. We are all pushing in the same direction which is very powerful.

How does BMS approach reinsurance and how is this different from your peers?

We built our reinsurance team differently. We are not pigeonholed to a single class of business. Clearly, we all have our specialities which we gravitate towards, but this approach enables us to have very open conversations with clients that are not confined to one specific area of risk. Furthermore, our capital advisory team sits within the reinsurance division, allowing us to find the best solutions for our clients whether that’s reinsurance, or capital.

Collaboration runs throughout the business and means we aren’t held back by bureaucracy or arbitrary structures. We are all contributing to the same P&L, which means we are aligned in helping our clients meet their own goals.

What are hoping to get out of the Baden-Baden Reinsurance Meeting?

Baden-Baden falls towards the end of hurricane season and give us a great opportunity to discuss the fast-approaching renewals with our clients and reinsurers. It’s a good time to get into the weeds of programs and offers an opportunity for us to differentiate our clients to their reinsurers.