Aspen Announces New CEOs for Insurance & Reinsurance Units as Vitale Retires

May 18, 2016

Bermuda-based Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd. has appointed new leaders for its insurance and reinsurance segments, in response to the announced retirement of CEO Mario Vitale.

Stephen Postlewhite, previously chief executive officer of Aspen Reinsurance, has been appointed chief executive officer, Aspen Insurance, with immediate effect. Succeeding him as CEO of Aspen Re is Thomas Lillelund, who previously was Aspen Re’s managing director, Asia Pacific.

Vitale has been CEO of Aspen Insurance since 2012, and he will remain with Aspen until June 30 to ensure a smooth transition, Aspen said in a statement.

“The leadership changes announced today reflect our strategy of continuing to build strong, diversified insurance and reinsurance platforms for the benefit of our clients, business partners and investors,” said Aspen’s CEO Chris O’Kane.

“Since taking over as CEO of Aspen Re in 2014, Stephen has guided the business through a challenging market, executing on our strategy and increasing profitability. Stephen is a proven leader and we look forward to benefiting from his strategic and operational skills as we continue to align our insurance business globally and leverage our increased scale to generate growth and enhanced profitability,” O’Kane said.

“Thomas is an extremely gifted leader who established our Singapore office in 2008 and he has built a highly successful and profitable business across the Asia-Pacific region,” O’Kane continued.

“I believe Thomas is the right person to build on Stephen’s strong track record, working closely alongside Brian Boornazian, chairman of Aspen Re, and Emil Issavi, president and chief underwriting officer of Aspen Re. We are well positioned to sustain the success of our reinsurance business under Thomas’ leadership.”

Thanking Vitale for his service to Aspen, O’Kane said that under Vitale’s leadership, the company has significantly grown its U.S. platform and enhanced its international position. “With his passion, energy, commitment and sharp focus on execution, Mario has built Aspen Insurance into a leading specialty insurer with close to $2 billion in annual premiums.”

In addition, Robert Rheel, president, Aspen U.S. Insurance, has announced his intention to retire from Aspen after 35 years in the industry. The company is conducting a search for his successor and Rheel will remain with Aspen until the end of June to assist with the transition.

O’Kane commented: “Bob has played a pivotal role in the successful build-out of our U.S. Insurance brand over the last five years. I would like to thank him for his considerable contribution to the business during this time and to wish him well for the future.”

Biographies of Postlewhite and Lillelund

Stephen Postlewhite was appointed CEO of Aspen Re in September 2014. He was previously the group chief risk officer in February 2013. He joined Aspen as deputy chief actuary in 2003 and became the head of Risk Capital six years later.

Before joining Aspen, he spent a year at the UK Financial Services Authority working on the development of the Individual Capital Assessment process for non-life insurers. Previously, Postlewhite had spent nine years with KPMG in London and Sydney, working as a senior general insurance actuarial consultant – predominantly on the London market, Lloyd’s and reinsurance clients. He started his career as a management consultant at Andersen Consulting and has been a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries since 2001.

Thomas Lillelund joined Aspen in 2008 and has been Aspen Re’s managing director for Asia Pacific since 2012. He began his career in underwriting and management in 1995 and previously worked at General Re, Swiss Re and AIG.

Lillelund is originally from Denmark and has lived and worked in Latin America, North America, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Asia. He has a BA in Economics from the College of William & Mary, an MBA from the Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario. He is an Associate in Reinsurance (ARe).

Source: Aspen Insurance Holdings

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