Munich Re bolsters P&C underwriting teams in APAC MEA with revised set-up

Munich Re is to strengthen its P&C underwriting teams in Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa (APAC MEA) with a revised set-up, which includes two regional divisions and personnel changes at the senior executive level.

As Chief Executive, Hitesh Kotak will lead Munich Re’s P&C business in Japan, India, Korea and South-East Asia.

Kotak has been responsible for Munich Re’s P&C operations in India, Middle East & Africa since 1 January 2023. He joined Munich Re in 2014 and paved the way for the establishment of its India Branch.

Under Kotak, Florian Gruson will be appointed CEO of Japan, subject to regulatory approval.

Gruson has been leading Global Sales and Distribution for the Group in Munich since 2021. Before this, he led the Japan Client Management team for three years. Gruson succeeds Brian Jinzenji, who will retire later this year.

Meanwhile, Haruka Narahashi will expand her current responsibility as Head of Treaty Underwriting in Japan to Korea. She has been with the Group since 2017 in senior roles leading Property Treaty and Underwriting.

At the same time, Ajeet Phatak will be appointed CEO of Korea and will relocate to Seoul. This appointment takes effect from 1 August 2024 and is subject to regulatory approval.

Michael Hauer will also take up the role of Head of P&C South-East Asia based in Singapore. He has been CEO of Korea since 2019. This appointment is effective 1 September 2024, following a handover with Ajeet Phatak.

Munich Re additionally revealed that Joachim Zagrosek will be Head of Treaty P&C Underwriting South-East Asia & India. This follows a successful three years leading the Regional Underwriting Centre for Japan, Korea, India and South-East Asia.

Simultaneously, Surbhi Goel will relocate to Mumbai to be CEO of India with effect from October 2024, subject to regulatory approval.

Goel has been based in Singapore heading P&C South-East Asia since 2022 and before this was in senior underwriting, business and reinsurance roles at a leading insurer in India.

Now looking at the leadership set-up in Australasia, Greater China, MENA, Africa, Cyber, Roland Eckl has been appointed to serve as Chief Executive.

Roland has been Chief Executive responsible for Australasia, Japan, Korea and South-East Asia since 1 January 2023, and was reportedly responsible for establishing Munich Re’s Regional Centre for P&C business in Singapore in 2016.

Under him, Serene Chan will be appointed Head of P&C Greater China, based in Beijing. She has led the growth of the Cyber business in Asia Pacific since 2018.

Belhassen Tonat will also be appointed Client Management Executive MENA, based in Dubai and will be responsible for the MENA region and the establishment of the new Dubai P&C Desk. He succeeds Andreas Pollmann who will focus as Client Management Lead Israel based in Munich.

Munich Re noted that these changes affect Property & Casualty operations in APAC MEA only.

Achim Kassow, Member of the Board of Management responsible for Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, commented, “Munich Re has grown strongly and profitably in Asia Pacific & Africa in recent years.

“One building block of this success has been the transfer of know-how and decision-making authorities to the region.

“We are now taking the next step in this process – Munich Re’s revised set-up in the region will be leaner at the top and closer to the markets.”

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