Life Insurance

Watford Re receives new name and CEO

Bermuda-headquartered Watford Re, which came under the ownership of Arch Capital Group and funds managed by Kelso & Company and Warburg Pincus in July, has shed its old identity.

The acquired business is now known as Somers Re, while parent Watford Holdings was also renamed Somers Group Holdings, as a nod to Bermuda founder Sir George Somers. According to Arch, the rebrand is part of a “strategic repositioning” for the reinsurer.

Maamoun Rajeh, chair and chief executive of Arch Worldwide Reinsurance Group and a Somers Group board member, stated: “After seven years operating under the Watford name, re-establishing the company as Somers Re marks a new chapter for the franchise.”

Another major change is the appointment of former chief risk officer Liz Cunningham as Somers Re CEO. She replaces Jon Levy, who served as Watford Re president and chief executive. Ex-controller Sioned Butler, meanwhile, has become chief financial officer.

“Liz and Sioned bring fresh perspectives and strong leadership to the company, while maintaining institutional knowledge and continuity from their time in Watford,” said Rajeh. “I am also pleased to remain engaged with our long-term partner, Highbridge Principal Strategies, as our primary investment manager.”

Somers Group’s insurance operations – Watford Specialty Insurance Company, Watford Insurance Company, Watford Insurance Company (Europe), and Axeria IARD – meanwhile, will retain their respective branding.

“I am looking forward to continuing the work with our founding sponsor Arch and welcoming the new Warburg Pincus and Kelso board members to Somers Re,” commented Cunningham. “We are taking the best parts of Watford and adding new strategies and capabilities.”  

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