Cooper Gay Swett & Crawford (CGSC), the independent wholesale and reinsurance broker, is to expand its Swett & Crawford wholesale broking business into the Latin American market.
The growth strategy and investment was announced earlier this month by CGSC group chief executive officer (CEO), Toby Esser, during a visit to Brazil where he met with some of the country’s leading insurance brokers.
While CGSC’s reinsurance broker, Cooper Gay, has an established presence in Latin America with businesses in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru, to date the group has not focused on growing its wholesale business market share in the region.
The Brazilian operation will be led by Fabio Basilone, CEO of Cooper Gay do Brasil, who has additionally been appointed CEO of Swett & Crawford Brazil.
José Carlos Moraes de Abreu Filho, an executive officer of the Brazilian insurance company Itaú Seguros for more than 28 years, has also been appointed chairman of the board of directors of Swett & Crawford Brazil.
Esser said: “The expansion of our established wholesale business into the buoyant Latin American market is a very exciting prospect for CGSC. By introducing the 100 year old Swett & Crawford brand to the region our local teams plan to harness the considerable opportunities presented by Latin America’s low insurance penetration, resilient economy and expanding population of insurance buyers.
“CGSC is committed to making a substantial additional investment in the region, and Brazil in particular, over the next two years. As Brazil is the largest insurance market in Latin America, with non-life insurance representing in excess of $37 billion gross written premium, but only accounting for 1.66 percent of GDP, we plan to grow our business substantially by 2017.”
Steve Jackson, CEO of CGSC Latin America, said: “The introduction of the Swett & Crawford brand and capabilities to Latin America is a key pillar of CGSC’s future strategic growth in the region. Clearly, this is significant for our Group of businesses, but today’s expansion and investment announcement is also excellent news for the Brazilian and wider Latin American insurance market. Swett & Crawford Brazil is now committed to offering a wide portfolio of products and services from partnering insurers. This will, without doubt, contribute to the development of the insurance market throughout the territory.”
CGSC, Latin America, Swett & Crawford, Fabio Basilone