Chocolate Tasting Evening - Thursday 10 May

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In the midst of an area famed for its Indian and international restaurants, a unique chocolatier has emerged. Dark Sugars brings the culture of West African cocoa production to Brick Lane. It was the destination for AirSP members and guests on 10 May. Run by Nyanga, the chocolate is made on the premises using beans from her family farm in Ghana.

The evening began with a choice from the hot chocolate menu. Shards from the different chocolate slabs, according to your choice, are mixed with milk and melt as you stir your cup. "Sinful thickness" she calls it. Angelina’s of Paris has competition from the Dark arts!

A short and interesting talk by Nyanga was followed by tastings from the range of chocolates that surround you, displayed on an array of interestingly carved wood. The chocolates are made to Dark Sugars’ unique recipes and styles. "The liquor cabinet" range, in which you inject liqueur into the truffles by squeezing its pipette; the "pearl" range with their soft smooth centres; chocolate covered fruits; truffles with spices (cardamom and orange is a real winner); champagne, limoncello, coconut, mango, stem ginger and honey … the list goes on … and on … and all washed down with a glass or two of wine (yes, there is a wine bar too).

All who went agreed that a return visit is essential. Mr Wonka would have been gobsmacked – or should that be gobstopped?

Stephen Carter

Carter Perry Bailey LLP

Celebrating International Women's Day with Dame Inga Beale

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What glass ceiling?

Ahead of the curve once again, AirSP celebrated International Women’s Day, with a cut glass seminar celebrating the diversity and inclusivity which lies at the heart of The City.

We were delighted to host Dame Inge Beale, the first female head of Lloyd’s of London, who’s message of “be true to yourself” has such relevance today beyond gender or other barriers.

The audience was truly captivated by Inga’s enthusiasm and drive for recognition of excellence wherever it lay - her own career is testimony to perseverance in the face of male dominance. But her overriding observation was that effort, expertise and application will always be recognised.

Robert Harrison

International Women's Day 2018

Written by AirSP Secretary on .

What glass ceiling?

Ahead of the curve once again, AirSP celebrated International Women’s Day, with a cut glass seminar celebrating the diversity and inclusivity which lies at the heart of The City.

We were delighted to host Dame Inga Beale, the first female head of Lloyd’s of London, who’s message of “be true to yourself” has such relevance today beyond gender or other barriers.

The audience was truly captivated by Inga’s enthusiasm and drive for recognition of excellence wherever it lay - her own career is testimony to perseverance in the face of male dominance. But her overriding observation was that effort, expertise and application will always be recognised.

Robert Harrison

GDPR Presentation - 6 February 2018

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AirSP’s guest speaker on 6th February, Quentin Archer could not have been more relevant nor more informed and fascinating. GDPR was the subject. It is here. It is unavoidable and it is a considerable challenge to all in the insurance and reinsurance world. Yet Quentin introduced the complexities with ease and humour. A solid reflection on a good speaker is the Q&A to follow. There were many questions & all - both on the floor of the seminar & afterwards in the bar of the The Broker's Wine Bar, Leadenhall Market - generated more knowledge & informed comment by all attending.

Another highly entertaining & relevant seminar from AirSP.

Robert Harrison

Presentation by Penny Hudson - 10 January 2018

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Penny Hudson has spent many years working in Gibraltar obtaining authorisation for, and then running and managing, captives and agencies there. A familiar face at the Rendezvous de Septembre and other (re)insurance conferences, with global links and expertise, she joined Artex 4 years ago, since when she has spent two years working with the Malta office before returning to the UK to put her vast experience to work in compliance.

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With her specialist background and knowledge of the (re)insurance laws and practice of these different locations, with significant (re)insurance players, likely to be substantially impacted by Brexit, she talked to AirSP about the problems, risk and opportunities as Brexit draws closer. She explained how, so far as possible, the problems can be avoided, the risks managed and the opportunities taken by those seeking to do business in the UK and the EU in the years to come.

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Since no-one yet knows the parameters of the UK’s future relationship with the EU in (re)insurance, obviously precautions need to be taken. Both regulatory regimes (‘equivalence’ was mentioned in her speech and in much audience participation) and market access need careful assessment, and continuing monitoring as negotiations move forward.

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With nimble footwork and astute assessment, in which these smaller jurisdictions excel, and with the talent that they have, Penny believes and convinced her audience not only that the UK market should continue to thrive but also that Malta and Gibraltar will be able to accommodate to, and still have a valuable role, in the market in the future. They will continue to provide a launch’ platform for those wishing to insure risks in the EU and the UK.

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The watchword is: adaptability. We shall all have to adapt to the new regimes and relationships which Brexit will create. Malta and Gibraltar have the skills, and the (re)insurance base to be in the fore-front of the players doing so, and should remain players of whom everyone should take account.

Charity Quiz Night - November 2017

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AirSP has a history of great Quiz Nights. We did it again on 14 November.

Our charity this year was Tom’s Trust. Tom’s Trust was set up by parents who lost their son due to a brain tumour, on three weeks’ notice – without any psychological support or counselling for their child, their other children or themselves. It raises awareness of the need for such support, and funds to help provide it.

People from all across the market came together in The Habit, as last year, for fun and friendship while pitting their wits against each other and the quiz-mistresses. Besides a raffle – first prize a picnic basket of gin, and others ranging from a John Lewis voucher through an enormous Christmas pudding to a bottle of champagne (and other bottles!) – participants enjoyed a superbly compered ‘Heads and Tails’ contest; splitting the money raised between the winner and the charity. They then went on to answer questions ranging from pies, though confectionary to films identified from photographs, while enjoying food and drink.

Congratulations to our winning team this year, “Who is No. 1”, captained by Neville Hunt. We hope they enjoyed the prizes – a bottle of wine and a mini Christmas Pudding for each team member!

£700 was raised for Tom's Trust and we are all delighted to have helped such a good cause.

Bill Perry - Chairman

Thank you so much for supporting us and raising such an amazing amount of money for the charity and supporting children with brain tumours! Just to put the money that your raised into perspective, it will buy 10 sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy for four children, something that would not have been available to them, so please do pass on our thanks to all those involved in what sounded like a wonderful evening.

Again, a huge thank you from everyone at Team Tom for supporting our work.

Deborah Whiteley - Founder

www.tomstrust.org.uk

Monte Carlo Annual Dinner - Monday 11 September 2017

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"Drinking good wine with good food in good company is one of life’s most civilized pleasures" is variously attributed, but they must have had in mind restaurant Quai Des Artistes in Monte Carlo! It was there on Monday 11th September that the AirSP Annual Rendezvous Dinner took place. A fabulous evening was had by members and guests as the wine flowed with magnificent food. Our largest number to date – 34 – met for a few sharpeners beforehand and then sat at the longest table your correspondent has seen! Shop talk of the Rendezvous, insurance and reinsurance and the effects of the hurricane season no doubt gradually gave way to the weather we were enjoying – soon to be replaced by the cold and wet back in Blighty; your correspondent also suspects the conversation became even more "relaxed" as the good humour spread.

The organising of such a number was triumphantly managed by our own Secretary, Tracy Bailey, and the restaurant staff were up to the task of corralling us all to choose from a beautiful menu selection. Part way through our feast, Chairman Bill managed a welcome speech and the testimony to the generous mood amongst the table was that he spoke not just in English, but French too!

So, to break bread - with wine – in the company of colleagues and friends, in such surroundings certainly makes for a memorable time and surely a pointer to how rewarding can be the generating of doing business together. Cheers to AirSP.

Salut mes Braves!

Robert Harrison

Monte Carlo Dinner - Monday 11 September 2017

Written by AirSP Secretary on .

"Drinking good wine with good food in good company is one of life’s most civilized pleasures" is variously attributed, but they must have had in mind restaurant Quai Des Artistes in Monte Carlo! It was there on Monday 11th September that the AirSP Annual Rendezvous Dinner took place. A fabulous evening was had by members and guests as the wine flowed with magnificent food. Our largest number to date – 34 – met for a few sharpeners beforehand and then sat at the longest table your correspondent has seen! Shop talk of the Rendezvous, insurance and reinsurance and the effects of the hurricane season no doubt gradually gave way to the weather we were enjoying – soon to be replaced by the cold and wet back in Blighty; your correspondent also suspects the conversation became even more "relaxed" as the good humour spread.

The organising of such a number was triumphantly managed by our own Secretary, Tracy Bailey, and the restaurant staff were up to the task of corralling us all to choose from a beautiful menu selection. Part way through our feast, Chairman Bill managed a welcome speech and the testimony to the generous mood amongst the table was that he spoke not just in English, but French too!

So, to break bread - with wine – in the company of colleagues and friends, in such surroundings certainly makes for a memorable time and surely a pointer to how rewarding can be the generating of doing business together. Cheers to AirSP.

Salut mes Braves!

Robert Harrison

Members' Drinks - 9 August 2017

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August is the season for holiday and relaxation. Not so for the Board of AirSP which met for a lot of serious business on 9 August at The Broker’s. But even they followed it with drinks with members (in the same place) at one of AirSP’s two annual drinks parties for members (wait for our next in December at The Lloyd’s Club). People lingered for some time over good food (and lots of it), pleasant drink and always enjoyable company.

Insurance Fraud Forensics - 18 July 2017

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We were very fortunate to have Guillermo Lopez and colleagues from Rimkus Consulting for our July meeting. Guillermo has a range of experience in the insurance and engineering cycle from cradle to grave and gave a keenly interested audience a fascinating discussion about the claims process and how (Re) Insurers and other Experts can guard and protect themselves from fraudulent claims as well as claims which might be genuine in themselves but have circumstances that can give rise to argument over coverage or quantum.

Guillermo illustrated his presentation with some great video and other media, which gave us all a strong insight on the activities of Rimkus and other consulting Experts. They give the Market a remarkable service in claims management and adjustment, as well as being a valuable resource for loss control and pre-risk analysis.

The meeting concluded with an opportunity for Members to meet with Guillermo and his colleagues as well as other AIRSP Members and guests over a very convivial drinks session after his presentation. A great evening and enjoyed by all!

David Brackenbury