Specialist insurance broker Howden has named Marc Underwood as trade finance lead in a newly created natural resources desk within its surety team.

Underwood (pictured) joins two other hires, Chris Coomans and James Royal, in the team, which is based in Howden’s capital, advisory and placement division.

Coomans has been appointed head of natural resources, while Royal becomes head of mining.

Underwood brings both trade finance and renewable sector expertise, Howden says. He previously worked as senior trade finance manager at Lightsource BP, the oil giant’s solar power subsidiary, as well as spending five years at NatWest and three years at Barclays in roles related to trade finance and working capital.

Coomans moves to Howden after more than 23 years at ANZ, where his most recent role was head of resources, energy and infrastructure for Europe.

James Souter, managing director in Howden’s surety arm, says Coomans “brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise from the banking industry”.

Royal, a mining engineer, previously worked as head of resource at South Western Railway and was also a project manager for BHP Billiton. He “brings a unique offering to our mining clients, allowing us to have an engineering-led approach”, says Souter.

“Establishing specialist financing expertise and solutions that our natural resources clients can benefit from is extremely complimentary to our existing insurance offerings,” says Sam Martyn, head of natural resources, Howden Specialty.

Howden’s natural resources expertise includes a range of energy, power and mining risks, the broker says.