Markel to Combine Two Divisions to Create Markel Specialty

March 2, 2020

Markel is combining its Markel Specialty and Markel Assurance divisions into one division called Markel Specialty, which launches on April 1.

The new division will preserve the company’s current regional model and will add two new additional territories – East and West.

“This evolutionary change will make it even easier for our trading partners and customers to navigate Markel,” said Bryan Sanders, president of the new division, Markel Specialty, in an emailed statement. “By combining our Assurance and Specialty divisions, it will position us to get closer to and more efficiently serve our customers with unmatched underwriting expertise and competitive, industry-leading products.”

This change allows the company to leverage the strengths of two profitable growth engines that represent approximately $4 billion in gross written premium, according to corporate sources.

Sanders moves to the position from his current role as president of Markel’s US Insurance operations and the Assurance division. The East and West territories will be led by two executive territory officers–Sarah Gavlick (East) and Wendy Houser (West).

The East territory includes the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions, while the West will oversee the Mid South, Midwest and West regions.

Others on the Markel Specialty leadership team include:

  • Jim Arnold is chief administrative officer
  • Glenn Harris is managing executive, Distribution Strategies & Business Development
  • Jeff Lamb is executive director, Programs & Alliances
  • Matt Parker is executive director, Integration Strategy
  • Jane Peterson is chief underwriting officer
  • Scott Whitehead is managing director, Insurtech Underwriting

Markel Specialty, via retail agents, currently underwrites insurance solutions for commercial customers and individuals, with coverage ranging from workers compensation, property and casualty, accident, programs featuring industry or risk-specific coverage packages, and personal lines, according to the Markel Specialty website. On the other hand, Markel Assurance combines Markel’s wholesale-focused underwriting teams with teams focused on complex, risk managed retail accounts.

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