HAMILTON, Bermuda: BUSINESS WIRE/ME NewsWire: Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. (NASDAQ: AGII), an international underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products, today announced the appointment of Jose A. Hernandez to lead the company’s international business, which includes all insurance and reinsurance operations outside of the U.S. The appointment of Hernandez is effective October 3.
“Argo Group has arrived at a critical point in its growth as a global specialty insurance business,” said Chief Executive Officer Mark E. Watson III. “We’ve established a solid Bermuda platform, a thriving Syndicate at Lloyd’s, and gained local presence in key European, South American, Middle Eastern and Asian markets. We now have everything we need to drive international business with confidence, and Jose has the talent to help us do just that.
“Jose’s skill in leading and growing international business aligns fully with our ambitions. We’re delighted to have him on the team,” said Watson.
Hernandez joins Argo from American International Group where he most recently served as President and Chief Executive Officer of AIG’s Asia Pacific region, including 16 countries and jurisdictions, with more than 22,000 employees serving more than 10 million customers. “Argo Group has built an impressive international platform,” said Hernandez. “I’m looking forward to joining this first-rate team and continuing the company’s strategic growth around the world.”
With almost 30 years of industry experience, Hernandez started his career working for several insurers in the U.S. and abroad. He went on to spend more than 20 years with AIG in a number of senior leadership roles in both the consumer and commercial segments. He has expertise in field operations, distribution, underwriting, claims, strategic planning and management. Over the course of his career, Hernandez has held country (Mexico), regional (Asia) and global (New York corporate headquarters) roles.
Argo to establish new head of performance position
As a part of this change, David Harris, managing director of ArgoGlobal Syndicate 1200 will begin transitioning into a new group-level role, head of performance. He will report directly to Argo Group CEO, Mark Watson, with specific accountability for performance management.
“Like many of our executive team members, David has simultaneously fulfilled multiple roles across the organization – not only transforming and building on our Lloyd’s syndicate, but also leading enterprise-wide efforts to simplify operations and increase our overall efficiency,” added Watson. “Over the past 18 months, we have enhanced our leadership team with additional top-tier talent. We’re now in a position to enable some of our leaders to take on larger, more focused roles.
“I’m pleased David has accepted this new challenge. This move will enable us to leverage David’s talents more broadly across the enterprise – ultimately improving the organization for employees and customers alike.”
Harris will stay on as ArgoGlobal managing director until his successor is in place to ensure a smooth transition. “It has been a privilege to lead the syndicate over the last few years,” said Harris. “We have now reached a point in our development where Jose will bring together our platforms around the world and drive the international operations to the next level. I am delighted to be working with Mark at a group level on the execution of our strategic objectives.”
About Argo Group:
Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. (NASDAQ: AGII) is an international underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products in the property and casualty market. Through its operating subsidiaries, Argo Group offers a full line of products and services designed to meet the unique coverage and claims handling needs of businesses in four primary segments: Excess & Surplus Lines, Commercial Specialty, International Specialty and Syndicate 1200. Argo Group’s worldwide insurance subsidiaries are rated ‘A’ (Excellent) by A.M. Best with a stable outlook and its U.S. insurance subsidiaries are rated ‘A-’ (Strong) by Standard & Poor’s with a stable outlook.