Trade credit insurer Euler Hermes Group, an Allianz SE company, has tapped Allianz France chief financial officer Clarisse Kopff (pictured) to succeed outgoing chief executive and management board chair Wilfried Verstraete.
In a release, it was noted that Verstraete has decided to step down from his operational duties at the end of 2020 after successfully holding the top post at Euler Hermes for 12 years. He isn’t leaving the credit insurer, though, and will serve as an advisor to Kopff, whose appointment takes effect in the New Year.
Additionally, Verstraete will retain board positions in Euler Hermes SA, Euler Hermes North America, Solunion, and Euler Hermes Reinsurance AG.
“It has been a real privilege to serve my teams and our clients as the CEO of Euler Hermes,” he stated. “I am proud to have witnessed the high potential of our teams unleashed, which resulted in expanding our market leadership and raising the bar of unparalleled customer service.
“Yet, the strength of this company can only be as strong as the ties between our partners. Therefore, I want to thank our clients and partners for their unwavering trust in us throughout these years.”
Kopff, meanwhile, is no stranger to Euler Hermes, where she worked from 2001 until her move to Allianz France in early 2018. She was Euler Hermes’s group CFO from 2014.
Commenting on her return, Kopff said: “I am honoured to accept this position as Euler Hermes Group CEO. I thank Wilfried Verstraete for his trust. The current crisis is far from over but with his ongoing support, I am prepared to lead the company and accompany our clients and partners through these difficult times.
“It is a great mission for leaders today to instil confidence in tomorrow. On more personal grounds, I am also looking forward to reconnecting with my former colleagues at Euler Hermes.”
At the same time, the incoming boss expressed gratitude for her “prolific and eventful” stint at Allianz France.
“Clarisse proved her talent and competence throughout her 16 years at Euler Hermes,” added Verstraete, “where she was instrumental in creating a truly integrated group reinforced by its strong financial performance.
“I am confident that with her visionary leadership, backed by her experience at Allianz France, Clarisse will take Euler Hermes to the next level and continue setting the standard for customer experience in trade finance.”