Lockton is the world’s largest privately owned insurance brokerage firm. Clients across the globe count on Lockton for risk management and insurance services, and with recorded net revenues of USD 914.7million for 2012, those services appear to be paying dividends.
Indeed, the firm is projecting net revenues of approximately USD 1billion for 2013: a milestone that underscores its commitment to providing its clients with best-of-breed insurance products.
Lockton’s Financial Risks division has developed relationships with some of the world’s leading insurers to ensure clients receive the right coverage they need to operate with peace of mind. Alex Burton-Brown (pictured) is an Associate Director at part of the alternative asset risk team within the division.
“In comparison to our competitors, 2012 was a phenomenal year where we were appointed by a large number of new clients ranging from Europe’s largest asset manager all the way down to pretty much every major start,” says Burton-Brown.
What sets Lockton apart is its focus is on growing with each client, and making sure that the right insurer is in place from day one; if managers grow their fund(s) alongside a diversification in the investor base this changes their risk profile and may affect the ability of their insurance policy to adequately respond.
Explains Burton-Brown: “If a fund has more than 25 per cent of its investors in the US, for example, the appetite from certain insurers to underwrite this risk can be severely diminished. From day one we try to marry up the manager with the right insurer by understanding where they expect to be in two or three years time.”
Lockton has built its reputation as a market leader in Directors and Officers (D&O) and Professional Indemnity (PI). With more than 60 offices worldwide, its global hedge funds group is able to support clients in all major financial markets.
“A significant number of UK-based managers have sizeable US investor contributions. Given the litigious nature of the US and the increase in regulation, this tends to be where claims emanate from. Being a global broker and being able to deal with claims on both sides of the pond is a key advantage for Lockton,” says Burton-Brown.
As well as being appointed to a significant number of small managers due to extremely positive referrals, social media platforms have also proved invaluable, with Burton-Brown referring in particular to the COO Yahoo network; a chat forum for COOs to exchange ideas. “I’ve had some clients say to us ‘You’ve been recommended by people on the network saying how good your service is.”
With the AIFM Directive taking affect in July, Lockton is at the forefront of developments, keeping clients fully briefed on the level of professional indemnity they will need to take out post implementation. The firm also recently hosted a seminar on Solvency II.
“We think of ourselves as an outsourced risk department as opposed to just an insurance broker. We are a risk management partner to our clients and always try to be proactive in helping shape developments in the industry,” says Burton-Brown.
On winning the hedgeweek award Burton-Brown comments: “We are delighted to have been recognised by our clients and industry sector peers. The team thoroughly deserve the recognition for their service-centric approach. This major award has put the team on the map and will, I have no doubt, propel them forward to even greater heights.”