Bermuda-based Alea Group Holdings, a global reinsurance and specialty insurance company, announced the promotion of Mark L. Ricciardelli from Group President and COO to Group President and CEO with immediate effect. He has also been appointed an Executive Director.
The announcement said that “Dennis Purkiss, CEO of Alea since May 2000, will stay on at Alea until the end of the year to ensure a smooth transition and has agreed to become a Consultant to the Group under a 12-month contract commencing 1 January 2005. He will step down from the Board of Directors with effect from 30 June 2004.”
Alea indicated that the management change has been under consideration for some time, and that it was Purkiss decision to accelerate it.
Ricciardelli has 28 years’ experience within the reinsurance industry. Before joining Alea he worked for General Electric for 15 years, where he was most recently President and CEO, Global Casualty, of GE’s Employers Reinsurance Corporation.
Purkiss led Alea’s listing on the London Stock Exchange in November 2003 and has begun the next phase of the Company’s growth plans. Alea said it intends “to deploy new capital to capture the growth opportunity that exists in the Company’s chosen markets – namely, casualty reinsurance, alternative risk, excess & surplus lines, and in Europe. These plans remain on track. Owing to the successful implementation of the Group’s strategy, Mr. Purkiss feels sufficiently assured of the Group’s prospects to step aside”
John Reeve, non-executive Chairman of Alea and a former Executive Chairman of Willis Group Holdings, commented: “Dennis has done a tremendous job building and guiding Alea, and we wish him well. We are pleased he has agreed to continue to work for Alea to ensure a smooth transition. Mark brings with him a wealth of experience that will benefit the Group enormously as it moves into the next phase of its development.”
Purkiss responded that he was “proud of what we have built at Alea and believe the Group has an exciting future. I am pleased to be and will remain a stockholder, and will act to ensure a smooth transition to Mark as CEO. I wish my colleagues and the Company well as the Group evolves and prospers.”
Ricciardelli noted that, “Dennis has built Alea into what it is today – a strong, diversified global insurer and reinsurer with a focused strategy and strong operating results. I am excited by the opportunity to lead Alea.” He added: “We have an excellent team, a very strong future and our financial plan for 2004 remains unchanged. I plan to drive the Company’s existing strategy and look forward to working with my Alea colleagues to achieve the next level in the Group’s development.”