Asta, the Lloyd’s third party managing agent and specialist MGA investor, announced that Dubai-based Arma Underwriting Ltd. has received full approval from all regulators and commenced operations last month.
Asta-backed Arma is an approved Lloyd’s coverholder that writes multi-line re/insurance business backed by “A+” rated Lloyd’s security, Asta said in a statement.
Arma said it intends to develop close relationships with brokers and cedents in Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, targeting individual risks as well as portfolio-driven strategies. The UAE and Saudi Arabia, the region’s largest markets, will be a particular focus for the company.
The initial business lines are property (including terrorism and jewelers’ block), liabilities, energy, personal accident and motor.
“This is a new and innovative business model that offers more breadth of cover, more depth of capacity and more services than most in the region,” said Michael Rafter, group CEO of Arma.
“We have bought together a team of highly skilled experts in the region, who will work closely with brokers and cedents to provide a blend of insurance and reinsurance unlike anything else in the market,” Rafter said.
Arma goes beyond simply providing reinsurance capacity and will work directly with its “partners to improve and grow their portfolios,” he explained.
“We will also assist our partners with not just capacity but intellectual capacity, analytics, operational flows and sales techniques and processes,” he added. “We are joining the dots from retail insurance back to reinsurance, bringing reinsurance close to the end customer.”
The office in the Dubai International Finance Centre is led by Hajar Fadel as senior executive officer. Former AIG president and former CEO of Oman Insurance Co., Patrick Choffel, is a member of Arma’s board of directors, along with Julian Tighe, Asta’s CEO, and Simon Norton, Asta’s director of underwriting.
The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) and Lloyd’s have authorized Arma to begin operations.
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