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Industry stalwart Albert Benchimol to step down

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remarkable transformation: Albert Benchimol is expected to step down as president and chief executive of of Axis Capital (File photograph)

A titan of Bermuda’s re/insurance sector is to retire.

Albert A Benchimol, president and chief executive officer of Axis Capital Holdings Limited since 2012, will step down from his role on May 4.

That move is timed to the company’s annual general meeting.

Mr Benchimol will retire at the end of 2023.

He will be succeeded as president and CEO by Vincent C Tizzio, who currently serves as CEO, Specialty Insurance and Reinsurance, overseeing all business lines and front-end operations for Axis.

Mr Benchimol will continue with Axis through year-end 2023 as a strategic adviser to the company.

In the months ahead, Axis said, Mr Benchimol and Mr Tizzio will partner to ensure a smooth leadership transition.

Mr Benchimol said: “Serving as president and CEO of Axis has been the most fulfilling and rewarding experience of my professional career.

“I’m grateful to my fellow colleagues -- past and present -- for their support, commitment, and dedication, and I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished together.”

He added: “Even with all the progress that’s been achieved, I believe Axis has only begun to scratch the surface of what’s possible. I have enormous confidence in Vince and his leadership, and I have comfort knowing that I am leaving the company in very strong hands.”

Under Mr Benchimol’s guidance, Axis led a multiyear transformation programme, repositioning the company as a leader in specialty underwriting while driving improved business results and creating a strong foundation for the future.

Henry Smith, chairman of the Axis board of directors, said: “We are indebted to Albert for his leadership, which has spanned more than a decade. Under Albert’s direction, Axis has had a remarkable transformation, refocusing itself as a specialty leader while building a balanced and resilient portfolio and placing the company on a pathway for lasting profitable growth.

“Albert has also been a great culture leader, growing a workplace environment that is both performance and people-oriented, and under his guidance, Axis has become a best place to work in the industry.

“Underpinning all of this is a customer-service mindset that permeates every aspect of the company’s operations, resulting in strong and enduring bonds with brokers and customers -- a testament to Albert’s legacy.”

Mr Smith added: “We couldn’t be more excited to announce Vince’s appointment as the future president and CEO of Axis.

“During his first year with the company, Vince has made an impressive impact, challenging Axis to build on its progress by driving further profitable premium growth for its specialty insurance business, identifying exciting new avenues to grow the business, and helping us to become even more agile and efficient in our front-end operations.

“In addition, Vince is an energising and committed people leader who will continue to help our team and company unlock their significant potential.”

Mr Tizzio said: “It is a privilege and an honour to succeed Albert as president and CEO of Axis and to have an opportunity to build upon the great work that he and the team have led.

“My experiences in my first year at Axis only further intensified my belief that there’s tremendous opportunity to further profitably grow the business and deliver even greater value to our employees, shareholders, and customers.

“Moreover, in today’s market environment where brokers and insureds are looking for specialised insurance and risk solutions, we were literally built for this moment.”

Mr Benchimol said: “Vince is deeply committed to our strategy of advancing Axis as a leader in specialty.

“In a short period of time, he’s made an enormous positive impact, mobilising the team to even further elevate our ambitions, leverage our extensive market knowledge and relationships, while delivering added value to our customers and the market.”

Mr Benchimol has had a career in re/insurance and banking that has spanned more than four decades.

He was appointed president and CEO of Axis in May 2012 and has served as director since January 2012.

Mr Benchimol joined the company as executive vice-president and chief financial officer in January 2011.

He formerly served as executive vice-president and chief financial officer of PartnerRe Ltd from April 2000 through September 2010, and chief executive officer of PartnerRe Ltd.'s Capital Markets Group business unit from June 2007 through September 2010.

Mr Benchimol sits on the Insurance Development Forum Steering Committee and is an officer of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers.

He has served in a leadership role in a number of industry organisations, including Abir (chairman, 2019-2020 and vice-chairman, 2017-2018), the Council of Lloyd's (external member, 2019-2020), and the St John’s University Maurice R Greenberg School of Risk Management, Insurance and Actuarial Science (board of overseers, 2017-2022).

Mr Tizzio joined Axis in January as senior adviser -- insurance market strategy and future Insurance CEO, before having his role expanded in June to CEO, Specialty Insurance and Reinsurance, where he oversees all business lines and front-end operations.

During Mr Tizzio’s tenure as CEO, Specialty Insurance and Reinsurance, Axis said, the company continued to drive record premium growth for its specialty insurance business; implemented the repositioning of Axis Re as a specialist reinsurer; launched Axis Wholesale, a dedicated division servicing the wholesale market; expanded its offerings specifically designed for small-to-mid-sized businesses; launched efforts to grow the company’s digital capabilities; and further scaled its global platform.

Vince Tizzio: to succeed Mr Benchimol as president and CEO of Axis Capital (File photograph)
Indebted: Henry Smith, chairman of the Axis board of directors (File photograph)

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Published December 21, 2022 at 8:01 am (Updated December 21, 2022 at 9:57 am)

Industry stalwart Albert Benchimol to step down

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