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Paul-Henri Denieuil, former chief executive officer of the Euler Group, and currently non-executive chairman of Deloitte and Touche Corporate Finance in France, has been appointed CEO of Gerling NCM, now renamed Atradius. He will hold this position while an executive search firm is engaged to recruit a permanent CEO. Once the permanent CEO has been named, Denieuil is expected to become chairman of the supervisory board.

Denieuil, who has been advising the company since early May (on behalf of Deloitte and Touche), says: “This is a very strong company with respect to its organisational strengths as well as its market position within the industry. Bringing on CyC and SCO as shareholders and CyC as an operational partner would further enhance Gerling NCM’s position in the industry and its ability to offer global products.”

Denieuil succeeds Bernd Meyer who steps down as CEO after overseeing the shareholder restructuring and successful post-merger integration. Meyer will move to the supervisory board where he will continue to support the company’s development. Meyer, who started with the Gerling Group in 1978 and worked for 21 years at Gerling NCM and its predecessors, was one of the initial promoters of globalisation of the product and oversaw the growth of the company into the world’s second largest credit insurer.

He says: “The new shareholding and the well advanced integration of Gerling Credit and NCM lay the foundation for a substantially improved financial performance after a 2002 that was burdened by one-off issues and distractions. This is the right time to put the responsibility into new hands.”

It was also announced that Anno Kamphuis, chief financial officer, has been appointed to the management board. It now consists of Paul-Henri Denieuil, Peter Ingenlath, and Anno Kamphuis.

The composition of the supervisory board has also been changed to steer the new independent strategy of the company. In addition to Meyer, Axel Wieandt (Deutsche Bank) and Detlef Bierbaum (Sal Oppenheim) have joined the supervisory board. Until Denieuil becomes chairman, Rudolf Kellenberger will act in this capacity. Bj írn Jansli, Max Dietrich Kley and Arend Oetker have stepped down from the supervisory Board.

Following the completion of the shareholder restructuring Gerling NCM will concentrate on an operational integration of its six European insurance carriers with the ultimate goal of developing, during 2004, a single European carrier based in The Netherlands. This process, which is still subject to internal and regulatory approvals, will simplify Gerling NCM’s organisation, result in a much more efficient structure, and achieve significant operational synergies. As part of this re-organisation, it is anticipated that the holding company of Gerling NCM will also be redomiciled to The Netherlands.

In addition, the company will be renamed as Atradius and will adopt a new logo and new corporate identity, as part of the migration from the Gerling Group. The introduction of the new brand will be completed by the end of the year.

Gerling NCM has also announces highlights of the first half year results. Total gross revenue of €631mn up to the end of June 2003 stayed virtually at the same level as last year’s result of €639mn for the same period. A moderate growth in the 2003 turnover of 1% was offset by currency devaluations, mainly on the pound sterling and US dollar. It should also be viewed in the context of a more prudent stance on underwriting. The 2003 performance until the end of June resulted in a profit of €34.9mn after tax.