Manama: Arab Insurance Group (Arig) today announced certain management changes and succession plans following receipt of required regulatory approvals.
Mr Udo Krueger will step down as Chief Executive Officer on completion of his remarkably successful six year tenure with Arig. During his term of office, he saw through the completion of his mission of achieving a turnaround for Arig, restoring its financial, operational and competitive position and charting out its strategies for future growth and profitability. Mr Krueger advised the Board of Directors of his desire to leave Arig at the expiry of his current fixed term contract at the end of June 2006.
The Board of Directors approved a succession plan whereby Mr Yassir Albaharna, currently General Manager – Reinsurance, will become Arig’s Chief Executive Officer effective from 1 April 2006.
Mr Albaharna, 42, is a highly qualified Bahraini national who has served Arig in various underwriting and managerial capacities with distinction since 1987, when he joined the Company as a trainee. He graduated in 1984 with a Bachelor degree in Engineering from McGill University in Montreal and then in 1986 obtained a dual Master in Engineering (Manufacturing) and an M.B.A (High Honors) from Boston University. In 1993, he was elected as “Fellow” and “Chartered Insurer” of the CII in London.
Mr Albaharna has already been part of the general management team at Arig since November 2003 – in which capacity he has been closely involved in the formulation and implementation of Company strategies.
Additionally, Mr Albaharna represented Arig in a number of Boards. He currently serves as Chairman of Arima Insurance Software (Arig’s subsidiary for development and marketing of insurance software), Chairman of Arig Insurance Company Limited, UK (having lately completed a successful solvent Scheme of Arrangement), Board member of Takaful Re Limited (the Islamic reinsurance subsidiary of Arig incorporated in the DIFC in Dubai), Board member of Arab Lebanese Insurance Group in Beirut (an associate company) and Board member of the Bahrain Insurance Association.
The Reinsurance Operations will now be headed by Mr Andreas Weidlich, 50, a German national, who will become Deputy General Manager – Reinsurance from 1 April 2006. Mr Weidlich has previously served with the German insurance majors, Allianz and Munich Re in several senior management positions such as Principal, Allianz Risk Transfer, Bermuda, General Manager, Allianz Re Singapore Branch and General Manager and Deputy CEO of Munich Re Singapore Branch.
Commenting on the appointments, Mr Khalid Al Bustani, Arig’s Chairman, said, “We are extremely thankful to Mr Krueger for his focused and dedicated efforts that have paid rich dividends. It is also a fitting tribute to his stewardship that we are able to effect a smooth transition to a new generation of Arig’s leaders ensuring at the same time, continuity of management philosophy and style. We will miss Mr Krueger but wish him well as he takes a break from the insurance and reinsurance industry.”