LOIM launches ILS offering and hires cat bond team

LOIM ratioLombard Odier Investment Managers (LOIM), the institutional asset management arm of Lombard Odier Group, has appointed an Insurance Linked Strategies (ILS) team, to offer institutional clients a further asset class with low correlation to mainstream assets.

Gregor Gawron (pictured) joins with team members Simon Vuille and Marc Brogli. Based in LOIM’s office in Zurich, the ILS team will report to Jan Straatman, LOIM’s chief investment officer.

Gawron previously led the cat (catastrophe) bonds and ILS offering at independent investment management group Dynapartners and before that at Falcon Private Bank. Prior to this, Gawron was a portfolio manager in the ILS team at RMF/Man Investments, where he worked closely with his current team.

“Cat bonds are uncorrelated to other risks, including economic and capital market events, while the 4%-6% returns on offer remain attractive. The overall ILS universe size is close to $60 billion (€53.9 billion) and growing steadily,” Straatman says. 

“Investors face multiple challenges that are tough to reconcile: low growth, zero interest rates and valuations getting stretched … We need to help clients increase returns while safeguarding capital and that means better building blocks for portfolios. Cat bonds possess those qualities.”

The ILS/cat bond boutique expands LOIM’s high conviction fixed income range. Working with portfolios of insurance linked securities, Gawron’s team will aim to target maximum diversification across different risk types and different regions.

LOIM’s Geneva-headquartered business manages $49 billion on behalf of clients, as at December 31, 2014.

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