ICMIF’s long-established global reinsurance conference, the Meeting of Reinsurance Officials (MORO), will take place in April this year in the beautiful Canadian city of Montreal.
This year’s MORO is the 24th such event ICMIF has staged, and regular attendees will not need to be reminded of the value which comes from participating in the conference programme. Greg Lockard, Director of Reinsurance Operations with ICMIF member Shelter (US), also urges those who have not previously been to the MORO to think seriously this year about booking their place.
“My company has been a long-time supporter and attendee of the MORO and I personally have been participating since 2010. There is no shortage of invitations to industry events that flood our inbox on an almost-daily basis and I always have a hard time balancing my time with a return on investment as I consider attending various industry events throughout the year. But the MORO offers a very unique, specific programme centred around reinsurance which, among other things, fosters a collaborative approach among members to share what they are doing and potentially match up the needs of some members with those members than can offer solutions,” Greg says. As in past years, time will be put aside for a ‘Mini Monte-Carlo’, with pre-arranged meetings between insurers seeking reinsurance and companies offering reinsurance cover to talk directly with each other about terms.
The MORO has long provided a valuable platform for insurers in the cooperative and mutual sector to be able to develop appropriate solutions to reinsurance needs. Greg Lockard, who chairs ICMIF’s Reinsurance Committee, is able to assess this from both sides of the reinsurance relationship. “My role as the Director of Reinsurance Operations for Shelter Mutual Insurance Companies offers me a unique perspective as both a reinsurance buyer for a super-regional mutual company in the United States and a seller of reinsurance via assumed reinsurance treaty business on behalf of Shelter Reinsurance. I view reinsurance as more than just a financial transaction, whether I am buying or selling, and our membership of ICMIF certainly opens up relationships with like-minded companies that want to take a collaborative, long-term approach to reinsurance to support each other,” he explains.
The MORO will be taking place at a time when the disruptive pressures affecting insurance generally are also having their knock-on effect on reinsurance and the programme has been developed by the Reinsurance Committee to reflect the current issues. "We have a long list of topics we hope to cover. We'll be looking at how economic, political and regulatory forces are shaping global reinsurance business, with geopolitical uncertainty and protectionism potentially reducing access to reinsurance and making diversification more difficult for reinsurers,” says Mike Ashurst, ICMIF Vice-President, Reinsurance.
The MORO will have time put aside to assess the potential impact on ICMIF members of the General Data Protection Regulation that comes into force in Europe next May. Latest developments in catastrophe modelling, an area of huge interest as members strive to strike the right balance between adequate protection and the cost of reinsurance, is another topic for debate. The market for cyber insurance is continuing to grow, and members providing such cover will have the opportunity at the MORO to consider how to manage their exposures.
“We will also explore ways of using reinsurance to drive product innovation in life business. We will consider the relationship aspects of reinsurance business, and if there is a different approach to reinsurance buying for mutual and cooperative insurers", Mike Ashurst explains.
Greg Lockard concurs with this view. “There are many buzzwords in the insurance industry right now whether it's autonomous vehicles, big data, increasing regulation, economic uncertainty, political uncertainty, cyber risk and so on,” he says. “Each respective company should formulate their own risk assessment of the issues that may impact our industry. ICMIF and the MORO programme tries to address the possible reinsurance implications of these topics. The MORO is real life people coming together to collaborate on current issues facing the reinsurance industry.”
Ultimately Greg Lockard believes that the reinsurance challenges are very often the same for all cooperatives and mutuals, regardless of their size and reach. “While my focus may be managing USD100m+ events, another member’s focus may be managing an event ten times bigger than that or ten times smaller than that. We're managing the same issue, it's just a different scale,” he maintains.
“If your organisation is involved with reinsurance in any way, the MORO can benefit you in many different ways,” he adds. “There is always an excellent list of speakers, predominantly from member companies, that offer first-hand perspectives on reinsurance-related topics and then there is a very diverse audience from member companies around the world who are excited to collaborate with each other. The MORO helps to provide education to all those involved with reinsurance while fostering a collaborative environment that those of us in the mutual/cooperative insurance sector have come to appreciate.”
For more information on the event, agenda, hotels and how to register please visit the dedicated website for the ICMIF Meeting of Reinsurance Officials (MORO) Conference in Montreal at: www.icmif.org/moro2018