Integral ILS to access catastrophe risk via AmWINS MGA’s

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Insurance origination and distribution specialist AmWINS has confirmed that start-up insurance-linked securities (ILS) fund manager Integral ILS Ltd. will be accessing catastrophe risk through its managing general agents (MGA’s).

integral-ils-launch-image-logoIntegral ILS Ltd. was launched as a new ILS fund manager market entrant by industry execs Richard Lowther and Lixin Zeng, with AmWINS one of the supporting companies from the start.

The ILS fund manager has strategic partnerships with both global reinsurance firm TransRe and risk distribution specialist AmWINS, and the AmWINS relationship is particularly key as it promises access to risk from closer to the source.

When Integral ILS launched, we wrote:

“AmWINS has expertise and experience leveraging its direct risk origination and access to risk, to shorten the market-chain and channel that business to sources of ILS capital.”

As we explained at the time in July 2020, Integral was set to leverage its strategic relationships to gain preferred access to sources of insurance and reinsurance business, and the plan was to have everything fully-fronted to begin either via an AmWINS MGA participant carrier, or through TransRe.

We understand that part of the seed investment from Canadian pension giant the Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) was always destined to be deployed to AmWINS MGA business and this ability to shorten the market chain to access catastrophe risk from closer to the source was seen as attractive by the investor.

Now, AmWINS has confirmed that it will be working with Integral to bring efficient capacity from the ILS fund manager into its MGA business.

AmWINS said that the recently launched partnership with Integral means that, “The program will see Integral assume U.S. catastrophe risk originated from Amwins’ MGAs and will include small commercial, personal lines, middle market and large shared and layered accounts.”

AmWINS further explained that it is, “Committed to securing additional exclusive capacity for our clients who are facing the stress of the hard property market.”

Adding that it is, “pleased to announce a partnership with Integral, an ILS fund manager that will meaningfully increase our capacity offered in three areas,” those three areas being commercial CAT-property coverage for middle market and larger shared and layered accounts across multiple classes through AmWINS Special Risk Underwriters (SRU); Commercial CAT-property coverage for accounts with less than $5M in TIV through AmWINS Access; and personal lines coverage for insureds in CAT-exposed locations through AmWINS Access and Seacoast Brokers.

Ben Sloop, AmWINS’ Chief Operating Officer, commented, “This latest development is another example of how we build new products to support our market partners and bring more product to our retail clients.

“In this rapidly changing market, retailers need a wholesaler that understands the global capital markets, particularly as ILS funds continue to expand their appetite beyond traditional reinsurance. And for our market partners, ILS funds like Integral provide a capital-efficient way for them to expand their underwriting appetite while mitigating their critical cat exposure.”

It’s not dissimilar to the arrangement AmWINS had with Nephila Capital a few years ago, that saw capital under its management supporting AmWINS MGA program business.

These relationships make a huge amount of sense, for AmWINS and its clients, who gain access to efficient capacity that can absorb and manage catastrophe risks from their property programs, while Integral benefits from preferred access to risk from nearer the front of the market chain.

Integral ILS has since secured a second cornerstone investor in New Holland Capital and we understand that this allocation has been put to work in the renewals across reinsurance and likely some retrocession too.

Integral ILS is listed in our Insurance-Linked Securities Investment Managers & Funds Directory.

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