Markel Corporation: Everything you need to know
|Corporate headquarters||4521 Highwoods Parkway, Glen Allen, VA 23060, USA|
|No. of businesses in the Markel Ventures family||16|
|No. of offices||80|
|No. of countries||18|
|Gross premium volume||US$9.8 billion (2022)|
|Net written premiums||US$8.2 billion (2022)|
|Earned premiums||US$7.6 billion (2022)|
|Underwriting profit||US$626.6 million (2022)|
|Key people (Insurance)||Robert C. Cox (president and chief operating officer, Global Insurance), Susan L. Davies (chief human resources officer), Matthew A. Freeman (president and CEO, State National), Richard R. Grinnan (SVP, chief legal officer and secretary), P. Gregory Hagood (co-CEO, Nephila Holdings), W. Frank Majors (co-CEO and president, Nephila Holdings), Alexander D. Martin (chief financial officer), Robin Russo (EVP), Bryan W. Sanders (president, Markel Specialty), Simon Wilson (president, Markel International)|
About Markel Corporation
The Markel Corporation is a holding company for insurance, reinsurance, and investment operations around the world. It’s made up of 16 businesses with operations through 80 offices in 18 different countries. Its core business is specialty insurance, sold via Markel Assurance, Markel Specialty, and Markel International.
Founded in 1930 by Sam Markel, and headquartered in Richmond, Virginia (USA), Markel Corporation is structured in the following way:
In 2022, 87% of the company’s gross premium distribution was in insurance (including all direct business and facultative placements written across the company), valued at around US$8.5 billion. The remaining 13% of gross written premium – totaling US$1.3 billion - was in reinsurance (including all treaty reinsurance written across the company).
In general, Markel’s underwriters tend to focus on specialty risks. The firm has listed several areas that it specializes in:
Markel Corporation spent 56 years as a private company before going public on December 12, 1986. In its final year as a private corporation, Markel’s total operating revenues were US$33.3million. Fast-forward 35 years to 2021 and its total operating revenues hit US$12.8 billion. Invested assets also grew from US$31 million to US$28.3 billion in the same period, and total assets grew from US$57 million to US$48.4 billion.
Markel Corporation has made some significant acquisitions in recent years. In November 2018, the firm completed its acquisition of Nephila, an investment manager specialising in insurance-linked securities (ILS) and weather-related risks. The acquisition made Markel the second-largest fund manager in the ILS sector.
At the time of closing , recently retired co-CEO Richie Whitt commented: “The addition of Nephila to Markel’s insurance, reinsurance, insurtech, fronting, and existing insurance-linked securities capabilities will enhance and strengthen the breadth and depth of Markel’s offerings to policyholders, producers, and investors.”
In 2017, Markel purchased State National Companies for about US$919 million. The Texas-based firm was the largest and longest-standing pure-play insurance fronting business in the US. State National’s program services business provides licensed admitted paper to specialty companies and capital providers.
Whitt commented on the deal: “Strategically, State National will help us to leverage our insurtech and digital distribution initiatives, diversify our underwriting and fee-based portfolios and revenue streams, and add to Markel’s third-party capital capabilities. Combining Markel’s financial strength with State National’s unique business model and proven record of success, we are confident that all stakeholders will be well-served moving forward.”
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