Allied World COO Leaves Day After Alleghany-Transatlantic Deal Closes

NU Online News Service, March 7, 2:50 p.m. EST

Allied World Assurance Co. Holdings says David Bell, chief operating officer, is leaving the company to pursue other interests in Montana.

The news comes a day after Alleghany Corp. and Transatlantic Holdings Inc. announced the closing of their merger deal.

Allied World once had a merger agreement in place with Transatlantic until pressure from competing bidders and recommendations from stockholder groups led to its downfall.

Bell will remain with Allied World until May 1. A statement from the company does not specify the interest Bell will pursue in Montana but he has strong ties to the state.

Bell folds a degree in finance from the University of Montana and he serves on the board of The Mansfield Center in Missoula, Mont.

He is also founder of Montana-based Grateful Nation, an organization started to help soldiers and their families.

John J. McElroy, formerly the company’s president of personal lines for Allied World U.S., took over the COO role as of March 1, Allied World says. McElroy will oversee the Switzerland-based insurer and reinsurer’s operations and administration, information technology, ceded reinsurance and new product development.

Claims and human resources functions, which had also reported to the COO, will fall under Wesley D. Dupont, executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary, says Allied World.

John Bender, president and COO of Allied World Reinsurance Co., additionally New York-based Transatlantic becomes a subsidiary of Alleghany.

“Together we expect to have the flexibility to allocate our capital to the high risk-adjusted return opportunities in insurance and reinsurance,” says Weston M. Hicks, president and CEO of Alleghany, in a statement.

Michael C. Sapnar, president and CEO of Transatlantic, will continue to serve in that capacity.

Joseph P. Brandon has been appointed president of Alleghany Insurance Holdings LLC, executive vice president of Alleghany and chairman of Transatlantic’s board, Alleghany adds.

Brandon is former chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway’s General Re Corp.

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