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Asset managers make push into insurance sector

Family_insuranceA string of asset managers have signaled a higher focus on insurance firms in recent months, the latest being Axa Investment Managers.

Axa IM said this week it was increasing its presence in the insurance asset management sector and announced that Andrew Douglas was joining the firm from BMO Global Asset Management.

Low yields and the Solvency II Directive are among the drivers that may see more insurers outsource their investments.

Axa IM’s appointment comes in a week when asset managers were told they needed to better understand the needs of insurance clients.

The firm sees its ownership by French insurer Axa as a benefit. “Axa IM are increasing their footprint in the insurance sector leveraging the experience and vast expertise we have developed with developing solutions within our parent company,” said Rob Barrett, UK head of institutional sales at Axa IM.

Other insurance appointments in recent weeks include Charles Jewkes in a newly created role at Fulcrum Asset Management, which has £5 billion (€5.8 billion) of assets under management.

As director, global financial institutions, Jewkes will build relationships with major insurers and banks, which Fulcrum is selling its multi-asset solutions to. He joined from Schroders where he also had an insurance role. 

In January, Mehdi Guissi joined the solutions business at Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM) in a newly created role as head of European bespoke solutions for insurers and banks. Guissi had previously worked at Lombard Odier Investment Management where he was head of insurance and pensions solutions.

In December 2016, Invesco created an insurance role and appointed Ed Collinge, formerly executive director in JP Morgan Asset Management’s global insurance division.

At the time, Hugh Ferrand, head of UK institutional sales and services at Invesco, said: “Many insurance companies are reviewing their investment portfolios due to the impact of challenges such as low yields, regulatory and reporting requirements, technological advances driving change, and the decline of annuities.”

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