Assistant vice-president, insurance
RIOCAN REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT TRUST
Back in 2001, Renee Simms started her career in risk management when RioCan underwent a strategic plan to internalize the management operations of its commercial portfolio of more than 25 million square feet of retail space. Simms got to work building the infrastructure for RioCan’s internal insurance and risk management department, including managing general liability and first-party claims, negotiating insurance contracts, developing a risk control program, and serving as an educational resource for internal stakeholders. According to one industry peer, “[Renee] continuously challenges conventional practices and keeps improving her program.”
Working for one of Canada’s largest real estate investment trusts, with more than 350 existing properties and many more in development, certainly comes with its fair share of risks. For Simms, cyber terrorism, the increased frequency and severity of natural catastrophes, and environmental risks are at the top of the list when it comes the largest risks her industry faces today. Also on her radar are online shopping and the rise of subscription economy, and the impact they may have on standard brick-and-mortar retail operations.
When choosing an insurance provider to work with, Simms looks for financial strength, capacity, rate and resulting premium, and engineering services, as she focuses on the future of managing the risks associated with construction and redevelopment.
RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust
2300 Yonge St, Suite 500 Box 2386 Toronto, ON M4P 1E4