Metromile adds Cohen’s John Butler as non-exec chairman of Board


Metromile, the auto insurance focused technology company that recently listed on the Nasdaq after a SPAC acquisition, has added insurance and reinsurance linked investments specialist John Butler from Cohen & Co. to its Board.

John Butler, Cohen & CompanyMetromile went public in a business combination with Cohen & Co’s special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) INSU Acquisition Corp. II, in a transaction that gave the auto insurtech a pro forma enterprise value at closing of close to $1 billion.

Now, the company is rearranging its Board of Directors, with John Butler, managing director of Cohen & Company Inc. joining from August 4th and Sandra Clarke, CFO of Blue Shield of California, joining as a board director from August 31st.

John Butler was formerly a Managing Partner at insurance-linked securities (ILS) investment specialist Twelve Capital, where he worked on portfolios of catastrophe bonds, collateralised reinsurance and private insurance debt.

Butler moved to Cohen & Co. in 2017, to build out a private insurance debt strategy and also launch the company into insurance-linked securities (ILS), when the opportunity was right.

Fast-forward a few years and Cohen & Co. actually ended up leading the insurance and reinsurance related SPAC marketplace, becoming one of the biggest and most successful sponsors of these vehicles and taking a number of companies public, one of which was Metromile.

As of August 31st 2021, Butler will take on the non-executive chairman role of Metromile’s board, succeeding David Friedberg, CEO of The Production Board and Metromile founder, who held the position for more than 10 years. Friedberg, who we used to mention in our articles over a decade ago after he founded Weatherbill, will continue to be a member of the Metromile board of directors.

“I have been fortunate to work with many insurance companies throughout my career, and I have not seen a company like Metromile. I feel honored to join Metromile’s board of directors and help contribute to the strong foundation Dan, Dave and the team have already put in place to build a disciplined generational company,” Butler commented.

Metromile also announced that Betsy Z. Cohen stepped has down from its board of directors.

“Betsy, along with the entire Cohen & Company team, has been instrumental in our transition to a public company. We thank her for invaluable support and guidance this past year,” said Metromile CEO Dan Preston. “As part of our relationship with Cohen & Company, we have come to know John very well and have greatly benefited from his years of insurance industry experience. We are thrilled he is joining the Board.”

Preston added,“I am equally excited about Sandra’s appointment. She is a proven financial steward with years of experience at public companies, and she will be a strong addition to our Board.”

“John is an incredible operator and investor with extensive insurance relationships around the world,” Friedberg stated. “I would be hard-pressed to find a better fit than John to take the reins as non-executive chairman, and I look forward to serving alongside him.”

Vikas Singhal, a partner of ILS, reinsurance and aviation focused investment manager Hudson Structured Capital Management Ltd., is also on Metromile’s board of directors.

Hudson Structured Capital Management also supported the going public transaction for Metromile and has previously provided the auto insurtech with reinsurance.

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