Endurance picks industry veteran as new CEO: Charman replaces Cash as Endurance CEO
Bermudian David Cash has stepped down as Endurance’s chief executive officer and as a member of the board, with former Axis Capital CEO John Charman replacing him.
The Bermuda-based specialty insurer and reinsurer Endurance Specialty Holdings has elected John Charman as the company’s new chairman and chief executive officer, effective immediately.
William Bolinder, the current chairman of the board, has become the company's lead director.
Mr Charman, together with members of his family, had previously become one of Endurance Specialty’s largest shareholders with the purchase of $30 million of the company’s ordinary shares.
Mr Charman, 60, has four decades of global experience in the insurance industry, has been in a senior underwriting position since 1975 and has been in a CEO role since 1981. Most recently, he founded and served for 11 years as the chief executive officer and president of Axis Capital Holdings Limited.
Prior to that, Mr Charman was the CEO of Tarquin plc, the parent company of the Charman Underwriting Agencies at Lloyd’s, which was sold to Ace Limited in 1998. Mr Charman was a deputy chairman of the Council of Lloyd’s and a member of the Lloyd’s Core Management Group and Lloyd’s Market Board between 1995 and 1997 during the financial crisis at Lloyds.
“John Charman brings to Endurance outstanding leadership qualities, global insurance experience and the demonstrated ability to attain strong and consistent operating performance,” said Mr Bolinder, lead director. “John has a blue chip track record of delivering bottom-line results, improving underwriting ratios, managing risk and allocating capital efficiently.
“We believe the opportunity to benefit from his expertise is extraordinary and look forward to him helping Endurance build on its success to date while enhancing our focus on shareholder value creation. His investment of personal capital speaks volumes about his confidence in and commitment to our future opportunities,” Mr Bolinder said.
Mr Cash has served as CEO of Endurance since March 2010, having served as the company’s chief underwriting officer from 2005 to 2010. He was named president of Endurance Bermuda in May 2008, a role he previously served in from 2004 to 2005. Mr Cash joined Endurance at its inception in December 2001 as the company’s chief actuary and chief risk officer, a role he held through 2005.
As chief executive officer, Mr Cash made more than $2.5 million in total compensation, according to public records. Of this, $825,000 was received as salary and $41,250 was received as a bonus in 2012. Mr Cash was also awarded $1,471,250 in stock and $194,141 in other types of compensation last year, according to proxy statements filed for the 2012 fiscal year.
When asked if Mr Cash would receive any sort of severance package or compensation for remaining years left on his contract, a spokeswoman for Endurance told
The Royal Gazette, “Endurance is honoring its employment contract with Mr Cash, however we cannot provide details on the terms of that agreement.”
“On behalf of the entire Board, I would like to thank David for his 11 years of service to Endurance, the last three as chief executive officer. The board is grateful to David for his valuable leadership and dedication to Endurance and the work he has done to position the company well for the future. We wish him all the best with the next stage of his career,” Mr Boldinder continued.
Meanwhile, ratings agency, A.M. Best Co. issued a statement late yesterday afternoon saying that the financial strength ratings, issuer credit ratings and debt ratings of Endurance Specialty Insurance Ltd. and its affiliates are “unaffected by the recent announcement that Endurance’s chief executive officer (CEO), David Cash, has stepped down from his position effective May 28, 2013.”
A.M. Best’s statement also said it “expects that Mr Charman will be an agent of change at Endurance,” because he is so well known and highly regarded as a successful leader in the insurance industry.
According to a statement from the company, Mr Charman will receive a minimal base salary and no incentive compensation over the next five years. As an inducement to his employment with Endurance, Mr Charman will receive a stock option to purchase 800,000 ordinary shares at an exercise price equal to the opening price of Endurance’s ordinary shares on May 28, 2013, and a grant of 708,890 restricted shares. The awards will vest over the next four years, subject to Mr Charman’s continued employment, or in the event of certain terminations of employment and other events.
“Endurance is a great company with great people and significant future potential. The company’s high standing is a testament to the efforts and hard work of its employees,” Mr Charman said. “In support of my strong belief and commitment to Endurance’s future and to fully align myself with the company’s shareholders, I am investing a significant amount of my own capital in Endurance as well as foregoing any conventional compensation over the next five years in exchange for a single grant of restricted shares and options.”
“I am really looking forward to working with and closely supporting Endurance’s senior management team, employees and directors as well as our valued customers and brokers. My goal is to fully realize the company’s potential as a leading global specialty insurance and reinsurance company,” Mr Charman added.
Mr Charman’s appointment is subject to the approval of the Bermuda Department of Immigration.