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2018 Power Broker

Marine

His ‘Claim’ Is Advocacy

George Andersen
Assistant Vice President
Aon, New York

Most brokers list their job title as broker, of course. But George Andersen calls himself a client advocate/broker, and that small distinction is revealing.

Having “grown up” in the insurance world thanks to a mom in the biz, it feels like family to Andersen, so he treats his clients like family.

Andersen insists on being involved in the claims side of his clients’ needs because it allows him to better see where coverage holes exist, make improvements and offer solutions, he believes.

Richard Stanton, director of risk management, BAE Systems Ship Repair, said Andersen’s industry knowledge is tremendous, his customer service is exceptional, and he does a great job with complex, marine-related coverage issues.

Case in point: BAE Systems had a failure-to-launch claim that was complicated on the liability and inland marine side. A third-party barge had become suspended on their marine railway.

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“George helped get the resources we needed to salvage the vessel and get the railway repaired,” said Stanton. “He also took the lead in brokering an agreement between the two carriers on the coverage issues.”  Andersen led the negotiations between underwriters, salvors and surveyors and got it resolved.

Howard Charles, COO, Phoenix Marine Co., said its barge sank in Nome, Alaska, leaving valuable equipment submerged shortly before the harbor waters were expected to freeze — and stay frozen until spring.

With no time to lose, Andersen dealt with the Coast Guard and other officials and commissioned salvage divers to retrieve the sunken valuables.

A World of Knowledge

Herman Brito Jr.
Vice President
Marsh, New York

With his clients doing business in multiple countries, Herman Brito Jr. has developed a well-earned reputation as an international compliance expert, a skill that is becoming more and more valuable in the marine cargo insurance industry.

“We had a major situation where we weren’t compliant in Nigeria, a highly regulated country,” said Frank Santomauro, director, Corporate Insurance Group for Pfizer.

“Herman was a tremendous resource and helped us secure a local marine policy for our import shipments. He has excellent technical and negotiating skills, and he is a great advocate for Pfizer. He really understands our business, is reliable and he delivers,” Santomauro added.

Another client experienced losses on shipments prior to their 2018 renewal, which of course, caused concerns about premium increases.

Brito got out in front of it by creating a partnership between his client’s risk management team and the insurer’s loss control team to highlighting the client’s commitment to improving their risk. The result was more than $100K in savings.

He did something similar for another client: By highlighting the client’s commitment to work in conjunction with its carrier’s loss control team and leveraging its longstanding partnership with the insurer, Brito was able to reduce the client’s captive annual aggregate retention by $2 million without an increase in risk transfer premium.

Defining Moments

Scott Davis
Senior Vice President
Aon, Southfield, Mich.

When Scott Davis became the broker for a complex account, he started by reviewing everything from wording to data and learned that the coverage was so poorly defined that even the underwriters were unclear about what they were covering.

He felt this caused the underwriters to be conservative in their risk approach. Davis created a new workbook that compared critical items over time.

He reworded the submission document, too, to focus on critical items and more clearly define things for the underwriters.

He also worked with his client to rewrite the policy, so coverage was more clearly defined. The new and improved submission and policy wording resulted in a favorable result at renewal.

Bonus: The placement was finalized before expiration, something that had not been achieved in years.

“Scott is strategic,” said his client. “His customer service and communications are extremely good. He helped us restructure the wording and get broader coverage with a cost reduction.”

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Davis also clarified things for another client. “Scott met with me on the first day he worked with us and asked me what my expectations were. I told him, and he has delivered on all of them,” the client said.

Rosemarie Annese, director of risk management, Thermo Fisher Scientific, said Davis guided them as they told a key customer something wasn’t doable in the timeframe requested, ultimately helping them preserve the relationship and work toward accomplishing the request.

Getting It Done

Hardie Edgecombe
Area President
Gallagher, Metairie, La.

Mark Pisani, vice president of human resources and risk management, Associated Terminals, received a call on Thanksgiving morning: Could he place cargo coverage on a ship traveling to Louisiana from South America that would cover for discharge by his cranes?

Not only was it a holiday, but it was also something they wouldn’t normally do — the customer usually secures coverage. But unable to do so, the customer turned to Pisani, who then turned to Gallagher’s Hardie Edgecombe.

Hardie’s team worked with underwriters to get the coverage placed “in time for the ship to sail with favorable pricing. Our customers were happy and that resulted in continued business,” Pisani said.

More routinely, Edgecombe holds semiannual reviews to analyze the year’s performance and discuss renewals.

“These reviews have impacted the direction of our insurance program,” Pisani said.

“We’ve been able to properly assess taking on larger SIR’s, evaluate the diversity of our risk portfolio, gauge uninsured risk to our risk tolerance, review opportunity to set up our own captive, and move a split marine program to one where shared risk made more sense.

“Working with Hardie and his team at Gallagher has been a pleasurable and beneficial experience.”

Another customer, Steve Hale, CEO, Gulf Copper and Manufacturing, agreed.

Connected and Effective

William Penn
U.S. Marine Practice Leader
Aon, Southfield, Mich.

William Penn operates under the guiding principle that being a broker means being of service to your clients and treating them the way you’d like to be treated.

At the end of the day, he believes, clients buy insurance to get their claims paid, and it’s getting the difficult claims paid that differentiates the industry’s leading brokers.

So naturally, when a client had what he called “a tough year,” it was the expertise of Penn that quickly and satisfactorily resolved claims — and ultimately made that tough year a little more bearable.

One of the claims involved several shipments on the vessels of a shipping company that went bankrupt.

Penn worked with his client’s logistics team in the U.S. and Korea, as well as the underwriters, to ensure the containers made it to their destinations, so Penn’s client could keep its own clients happy. Then Penn handled the claims process to make certain it was properly adjusted to the satisfaction of the client.

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The key to the success of this claim was coordination with all parties and involving the right team of claims handlers and forensic accountants. They had weekly, sometimes daily, calls.

The client said, “Bill is a seasoned veteran in the marine market. But he has the drive and determination of a new broker trying to prove himself.

“He is one of the most connected brokers we have ever worked with in his respective field. Most lines of coverage are very relationship-driven, and I would say even more so in marine.”

More from Risk & Insurance

More from Risk & Insurance

The Profession

Curt Gross

This director of risk management sees cyber, IP and reputation risks as evolving threats, but more formal education may make emerging risk professionals better prepared.
By: | June 1, 2018 • 4 min read

R&I: What was your first job?

My first non-professional job was working at Burger King in high school. I learned some valuable life lessons there.

R&I: How did you come to work in risk management?

After taking some accounting classes in high school, I originally thought I wanted to be an accountant. After working on a few Widgets Inc. projects in college, I figured out that wasn’t what I really wanted to do. Risk management found me. The rest is history. Looking back, I am pleased with how things worked out.

R&I: What is the risk management community doing right?

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I think we do a nice job on post graduate education. I think the ARM and CPCU designations give credibility to the profession. Plus, formal college risk management degrees are becoming more popular these days. I know The University of Akron just launched a new risk management bachelor’s program in the fall of 2017 within the business school.

R&I: What could the risk management community be doing a better job of?

I think we could do a better job with streamlining certificates of insurance or, better yet, evaluating if they are even necessary. It just seems to me that there is a significant amount of time and expense around generating certificates. There has to be a more efficient way.

R&I: What was the best location and year for the RIMS conference and why?

Selfishly, I prefer a destination with a direct flight when possible. RIMS does a nice job of selecting various locations throughout the country. It is a big job to successfully pull off a conference of that size.

Curt Gross, Director of Risk Management, Parker Hannifin Corp.

R&I: What’s been the biggest change in the risk management and insurance industry since you’ve been in it?

Definitely the change in nontraditional property & casualty exposures such as intellectual property and reputational risk. Those exposures existed way back when but in different ways. As computer networks become more and more connected and news travels at a more rapid pace, it just amplifies these types of exposures. Sometimes we have to think like the perpetrator, which can be difficult to do.

R&I: What emerging commercial risk most concerns you?

I hate to sound cliché — it’s quite the buzz these days — but I would have to say cyber. It’s such a complex risk involving nontraditional players and motives. Definitely a challenging exposure to get your arms around. Unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll really know the true exposure until there is more claim development.

R&I: What insurance carrier do you have the highest opinion of?

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Our captive insurance company. I’ve been fortunate to work for several companies with a captive, each one with a different operating objective. I view a captive as an essential tool for a successful risk management program.

R&I: Who is your mentor and why?

I can’t point to just one. I have and continue to be lucky to work for really good managers throughout my career. Each one has taken the time and interest to develop me as a professional. I certainly haven’t arrived yet and welcome feedback to continue to try to be the best I can be every day.

R&I: What have you accomplished that you are proudest of?

I would like to think I have and continue to bring meaningful value to my company. However, I would have to say my family is my proudest accomplishment.

R&I: What is your favorite book or movie?

Favorite movie is definitely “Good Will Hunting.”

R&I: What’s the best restaurant you’ve ever eaten at?

Tough question to narrow down. If my wife ran a restaurant, it would be hers. We try to have dinner as a family as much as possible. If I had to pick one restaurant though, I would say Fire Food & Drink in Cleveland, Ohio. Chef Katz is a culinary genius.

R&I: What is the most unusual/interesting place you have ever visited?

The Grand Canyon. It is just so vast. A close second is Stonehenge.

R&I: What is the riskiest activity you ever engaged in?

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A few, actually. Up until a few years ago, I owned a sport bike (motorcycle). Of course, I wore the proper gear, took a safety course and read a motorcycle safety book. Also, I have taken a few laps in a NASCAR [race car] around Daytona International Speedway at 180 mph. Most recently, trying to ride my daughter’s skateboard.

R&I: If the world has a modern hero, who is it and why?

The Dalai Lama. A world full of compassion, tolerance and patience and free of discrimination, racism and violence, while perhaps idealistic, sounds like a wonderful place to me.

R&I: What about this work do you find the most fulfilling or rewarding?

I really enjoy the company I work for and my role, because I get the opportunity to work with various functions. For example, while mostly finance, I get to interact with legal, human resources, employee health and safety, to name a few.

R&I: What do your friends and family think you do?

I asked my son. He said, “Risk management and insurance.” (He’s had the benefit of bring-your-kid-to-work day.)

Katie Dwyer is an associate editor at Risk & Insurance®. She can be reached at [email protected]