Feed the planet: FOODprint 2022

Couple reading FOODprint

Managing the risks in Food & Agriculture is particularly important as any business activities in this industry – from farmers, breeders and producers to suppliers, supermarkets, and restaurants – help maintain stability in our society. Their financial resilience is also key to the supply, processing, distribution, and protection of food.

In our new publication FOODprint, we address a variety of topics and insurance solutions and also highlight the growing importance of risk management and alternative solutions like parametric insurance.

Some of the highlights in this edition of the FOODprint include:

  • Epizootics are a global problem: Learn about the way to protect against risks and minimize losses for meat farmers and processors;
  • International vs Local Insurance: Find out how do Food & Agriculture companies insure their plants abroad;
  • How to insure the uninsurable – Take a look at practical applications of Parametric insurance;
  • In the ocean of uncertanity: Choosing the correct risk management strategy in Food & Agriculture is hard. Read about how we approach risk management.
Read the FOODprint 2022

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Maksym Shylov

Group Practice Leader
Food & Agriculture

T +48 22 39 33 211

GrECo Annual Report 2021

Read about new GrECo clients, claims management successes and our plans for a more sustainable future in our publication Annual Report 2021.

The risk environment has never been so complex to navigate. In line with our risk-based approach, we look at risks from a business perspective. This has been our key mission in the last year, and you can read how we overcame risk challenges in our Annual Report 2021!

Read about new clients, claims management successes and our plans for a more sustainable future. Some of the highlights in this edition of the Annual report include:

  • GrECo & MAI – Stronger Together: Everything you wanted to know about our recent merger with MAI.
  • Spotlight on GrECo Romania: Read about hard-working colleagues in Romania and their client successes so far. 
  • GrECo nova in Portugal and Brazil: With the GrECo nova network, we can connect clients with brokers all over the world and for this occasion we talked with Jose Manuel Fonseca, CEO of MDS group, our partner in Portugal and Brazil. 
  • GrECo Specialty – Food & Agri: Learn in-depth about what are the services we currently offer in the field of food and agriculture. 
  • Claims Management: What happens when a huge fire causes a major financial loss for our clients? Read how we were able to assist Fischer Sports, our client, during a huge claims management process. 
  • Health & Benefits: During the current war on talents and Great Resignation, offering health and safety protection to employees is particularly important. Read how our Health & Benefits team analysis and determines the best employee benefits package for each client. 
  • Many pages on our CSR topics. 
Read the Annual Report 2021

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Supply Chain Spotlight Edition

Supply Chain Spotlitght Publication Cover

The global supply chain is so important for the worldwide flow of goods that we have made it the focus of this issue of Spotlight publication, focusing on the risks that a globally operating supply chain entails.

The world has become more vulnerable. We are experiencing natural disasters on an ever-increasing scale, global supply chain dependencies, cyber attacks, a pandemic and now the war in Ukraine.

Suddenly, the downsides of globalisation that gave us stable economic growth for a long time is also noticeable. The consequences of negative events are interruptions in global supply chains, backlogs in orders, rising raw material and energy prices and economic imbalances.

Some of the highlights in this Spotlight edition include:

  • Ever Given Incident: Learn more about how the shipping disaster at the Suez Canal has affected the entire world economy, insurance market and risk landscape.
  • Full order books and yet insolvent: Read in depth about interrupted supply chains, backlogs of orders, price increases for energy and raw materials, payment defaults and economic difficulties of companies.
  • Light at the end of the tunnel: The loss potential for supply chain disruption is large and runs into the billions. A new, promising risk assessment approach can lead to the loss reduction we have been longing for.
Read the Supply Chain Spotlight

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GrECo Group sets course for the future

GrECo Group Specialist Insurance and Risk Management
  • Friedrich Neubrand retires from the Supervisory Board
  • Friedrich Neubrand jun. moves from the Executive Board to the Supervisory Board
  • Ante Banovac becomes new member of the Executive Board

The market leader in risk and insurance management in Austria and Eastern Europe is preparing a reorganisation in the Executive Board and Supervisory Board of GrECo International Holding AG.

Friedrich Neubrand, company founder and long-standing Chairman of the Supervisory Board, will retire from the Supervisory Board in mid-2023, to be succeeded by his son Friedrich Neubrand jun. Friedrich Neubrand is convinced “that with the strategic realignment we have set the course for a successful and independent future in full agreement with all stakeholders.”

Friedrich Neubrand jun. joined the family business in 1987 and has been a member of the Executive Board since 2005. He has been instrumental in driving the company’s international expansion into Central and Eastern Europe over the past decades. The GrECo Group is currently present in 18 markets in Eastern Europe. “My move to the Supervisory Board ensures that we as a family are represented on the Supervisory Board as well as on the Executive Board by my brother Georg.” emphasises Friedrich Neubrand jun.

Georg Winter, who has been a member of the Executive Board of GrECo International Holding AG for almost 10 years, will take over his responsibility for Sales & Account Management.

Ante Banovac joins the Board as the third member, alongside the long-standing Board members Georg Neubrand and Georg Winter. “I am pleased that with Ante Banovac we were able to fill a strategically important position from within our own ranks; he is an ideal addition to the Executive Board,” says KR Friedrich Neubrand. After several years in leading positions in the insurance industry, Ante Banovac joined GrECo in 2014. As a member of the Executive Committee in the area of Sales and Market Coordination, he has in particular shaped the establishment and further development of the markets internationally.

Friedrich Neubrand sums up: “I would like to thank all colleagues, clients and partners, as well as the Supervisory Board of GrECo for the great cooperation over the past decades. The time has now come for me to retire from the Supervisory Board. At almost 82 years of age and after an intense professional career, I will now focus on family matters and my hobbies.”

The necessary resolutions will be passed at the Annual General Meeting and the Supervisory Board meeting in June and subsequently implemented.

About GrECo

The GrECo Group offers its clients individual solutions in risk and insurance management and is the leading insurance broker & consultant for corporations, associations and authorities in CEE. GrECo was founded in 1925 and is an independent, family-owned company, with the family Neubrand holding 86.67% of the shares. The GrECo Group is headquartered in Vienna, Austria and employs more than 1,000 people in 60 offices. In 2020 the Group placed a premium volume of 871 million EUR and generated total consolidated revenues of 101 million EUR.

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GrECo to withdraw from Russia

Today GrECo, the leading insurance broker and risk management provider in Central and Eastern Europe, has announced to transfer its operation in Russia to the local management. The Russian team will continue to advise its clients following strict service delivery guidelines. After 24 years of entrepreneurial activity in Russia, GrECo´s priority is the well-being of its colleagues on site and ensuring service continuity for its clients.

“As a family-run company, we are loyal to our teams and a trusted partner for our clients. The violation of peace and human rights is in sharp contradiction to the values which underpin our organisation. We fully support the demands to stop warfare and to end the tremendous human suffering in Ukraine.” said the broker.

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GrECo and MAI combine forces in Central and Eastern Europe

Specialist insurance broker GrECo acquires 100% of MAI CEE Ltd., a major risk, insurance and employee benefits consultant in CEE

The combined company, to be named GrECo, will be the leading professional services firm focused on the areas of risk and insurance management and employee benefits consultancy in CEE. GrECo has been active in Eastern Europe since 1989 and established a market-leading position with more than 1,000 employees in 16 countries.
MAI was founded in 1991 in Hungary and is active in 13 CEE countries with more than 240 employees, generating a revenue of 16 million EUR. MAI services over 15,000 corporate clients and places insurance premiums of 150 million EUR. With 20+ years in the company, the MAI executive board members are staying on board as part of GrECo’s leadership team.

“We followed MAI’s successful progress over the last decades, and made no secret of our long-standing respect for MAI and belief in the cultural compatibility of the two groups. I am confident that, as we bring the strengths of MAI into GrECo, we will have a significant influx of talent and create a combined group with deep expert skills and an unmatched CEE network in 18 countries. The acquisition of MAI adds a decisive momentum to the growth strategy of our entire group and significantly enhances our value proposition for clients and partners” says Friedrich Neubrand, Chief Executive Officer, GrECo International Holding AG.

Piotr Cieślak, MAI CEE Group´s Chief Executive Officer, summarizes: “MAI’s foundation was traditionally the servicing of international business, meeting the requirements of over 260 insurance brokers and their clients from all over the world. Today we serve both international and local clients across the CEE, CIS and Caucasus region. GrECo, being fully committed to an independent future, is the best fit. The combination of the specialist solutions of GrECo and the network of MAI creates the largest broker in the region. Together we will continue to be an independent, professional and reliable partner for our clients and international broker partners.”

Steve Bonynge, Group Chief Executive of the Oman based RMS LLC states: “RMS’s decision to sell our 72.08% stake in MAI CEE reflects our strategy of serving clients in the Middle East and Asia. We believe the combination of GrECo and MAI CEE represents the best outcome for our clients in Central and Eastern Europe.”

The transaction was signed on the 14th of September 2021, and the parties have agreed not to disclose the underlying purchase price of the transaction. Closing is subject to regulatory approvals.

About GrECo

The insurance market has become extreThe GrECo Group offers its clients individual solutions in risk and insurance management and is the leading insurance broker & consultant for corporations, associations and authorities in CEE. GrECo was founded in 1925 and is an independent, family-owned company, with the family Neubrand holding 86.67% of the shares. The GrECo Group is headquartered in Vienna, Austria and employs more than 1,000 people in 60 offices. In 2020 the Group placed a premium volume of 871 million EUR and generated total consolidated revenues of 101 million EUR.

About MAI

MAI CEE Insurance Brokers Group was established in 1991 to bring international standards and a broad range of insurances to clients in the CEE, CIS and Caucases regions. MAI CEE has since grown considerably, gaining a presence in 26 countries in Central and Eastern Europe with 13 owned operations and 13 cooperation partners. In 2016 MAI CEE‘s shareholder structure changed following an MBO and the RMS Group, a leading Omani insurance broker, became the majority shareholder. The RMS Group operates throughout the Middle East and Indian Sub-Continent as well as through MAI CEE in CEE, CIS and Caucases.

Company News

GrECo Specialty strengthens its Energy, Power & Mining practice

Pawel Kowalewski, renowned expert in the energy sector, will develop power & renewables solutions.

GrECo Specialty, a dedicated specialty unit of GrECo, the leading risk and insurance consultant in Central and Eastern Europe, is further expanding its services for the energy sector. Due to the ever increasing importance of the power and renewables sector a dedicated division was established to better support our clients in this industry. The new practice leader Pawel Kowalewski ACII, ARM, ARe will be heading the Power & Renewables division within the Group Practice Energy, Power & Mining.

Pawel is a seasoned insurance and financial services professional with 28 years’ experience in the industry. He joins GrECo Specialty from a leading Polish power utility conglomerate, where he was the Group Head of Risk Management and Insurance.

A major upheaval in the area of large corporate specialty insurance is expected in the upcoming years, as insurance capacities are withdrawing from carbon-intensive industries. Our objective is to provide existing and prospective clients of the Energy, Power & Mining Group Practice with state-of-the-art risk transfer solutions and optimise their Total Cost of Risk.

The newly formed division Power & Renewables has a clearly defined mission:

  • Provide bespoke re/insurance and Alternative Risk Transfer solutions to companies operating conventional and emerging technologies;
  • Long-term orientation to serve clients requiring sufficient time to transition and adapt to the future of energy, at the same time maintaining agility and leanness to help them achieve short-term objectives;
  • Be a knowledge-driven organisation utilising advanced technology to assist GrECo clients with building and maintaining resilience;
  • Become first mover to create cutting-edge risk & insurance solutions for the Power & Renewables sector.

Zviadi Vardosanidze, General Manager of GrECo Specialty and Group Practice Leader Energy, Power & Mining is happy that “Pawel has exceptional knowledge and understanding of client’s objectives, concerns and constraints, as he has successfully managed the overhaul of insurance programs for the largest power producer in CEE. In addition, he has excellent relationships with key stakeholders in the re/insurance industry. I am looking forward to further develop our Group Practice.”

Pawel Kowalewski

Practice Leader Power & Renewables Division

T +48 507 085 066

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

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Affinity pilot project for insurance of Ukrainian farmers

Parametric insurance solution for Corteva Agriscience

GrECo Ukraine, together with insurance partner ARX Ukraine have launched the pilot project for the Affinity parametric insurance solution for Corteva Agriscience customers.
The solution covers crops such as corn, sunflower, wheat and barley against drought as well as the possibility to monitor the insured soil moisture index through the MeteoControl platform which has become a partner and IT provider of this project.

Applying for the cover is very simple and easy by filling out an application form on the Meteocontrol.ai website.

In parametric insurance, a certain parameter which cannot be influenced by the agricultural producer is insured. Affinity parametric insurance refers to a solution which is distributed by an entity to the end customers, here the farmers. The GrECo Group is specializing in insurance solutions and affinity schemes for dedicated industries.

Corteva Agriscience is a publicly traded, global pure-play agriculture company that provides farmers around the world with the most complete portfolio in the industry – including a balanced and diverse mix of seed, crop protection and digital solutions focused on maximizing productivity to enhance yield and profitability. With some of the most recognized brands in agriculture and an industry-leading product and technology pipeline well positioned to drive growth, the company is committed to working with stakeholders throughout the food system as it fulfills its promise to enrich the lives of those who produce and those who consume, ensuring progress for generations to come. Corteva Agriscience became an independent public company on June 1, 2019, and was previously the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont.

The GrECo Group offers its clients individual solutions in risk and insurance management and is the leading insurance broker & consultant for corporations, associations and authorities in CESEE. The Group is an independent, family-owned company, headquartered in Vienna and employs 1.000 people in 57 offices in 16 countries.

ARX Insurance Company is part of the international Canadian insurance group Fairfax Financial Holdings, which has been successfully operating in the Ukrainian market for 25 years, 11 of which are under the AXA Insurance brand.

MeteoControl is a Ukrainian insurtech startup that helps farmers to insure unusual weather conditions using modern software solutions. With the help of Meteocontrol online platform, farmers will be able to apply for the insurance program, generate documents for signing, and track the current soil moisture level and the probability of receiving refund.

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GrECo Annual Report 2021

Read about new GrECo clients, claims management successes and our plans for a more sustainable future in our publication Annual Report 2021.

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GrECo further expands services for Food & Agricultural industry

Maksym Shylov, long-standing expert in agricultural insurance, established as Group Practice Leader

As the leading risk and insurance consultant in Eastern Europe, the GrECo Group is further increasing its specialization on dedicated services and solutions for selected industries. Therefore, GrECo is setting up a group-wide Food & Agriculture Practice. The new Group Practice Leader Maksym Shylov will be responsible for the strategy and development of this Specialty in all GrECo Group countries, including Poland where he will be located.

Maksym has 19 years of experience in risk management, especially in the area of food & agricultural insurance. Over the last years he has also been developing tailor-made parametric insurance solutions for clients in Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic States where he worked with international insurance and reinsurance markets from various countries. He has completed more than 30 large advisory projects for the agricultural sector, banks and insurance companies in various countries.

Maksym Shylov comments “The Food & Agriculture sector represents one of the fastest growing industries in our region. Today, additional exposures arising from climate change are more and more influencing our planet and in particular natural habitats. In addition, recently appearing risks such as COVID-19 are exposing the global supply chains resulting in auxiliary uncertainties. In order to secure a sustainable and ecofriendly supply, European economies are further incentivizing their domestic agriculture and food production.”

Georg Winter, Member of the Executive Board at the GrECo Group and responsible for its Specialty expansion is convinced that “more and more clients will benefit from GrECo´s strategy in continuously developing progressive risk solutions for dedicated industries. With the newly established practice, we will be able to provide tailor-made solutions for our clients in the food & agriculture sector in order to increase their resilience and to manage risks emerging from fundamental challenges ahead such as climate change, biodiversity as well as growth of population and their inevitable consequences.”

Maksym Shylov

Group Practice Leader
Food & Agriculture

T +48 22 39 33 211

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Alma Ribanovic strengthens GrECo Group

Leading expert for affinity solutions takes over development of the division in Austria and Eastern Europe

The GrECo Group, the leading risk and insurance consultant in Eastern Europe, is increasing its focus on special solutions and is setting up a dedicated Affinity Practice Group. Alma Ribanovic (37) takes over the new established position of Group Practice Leader with immediate effect. Alma Ribanovic is regarded as one of the leading specialists in affinity solutions and most recently worked for UNIQA, where she headed the Affinity division.

Affinity as B2B2C business stands for smart and convenient insurance solutions. As a new business model it is a direct response to the disruption and changes on the insurance market – it proactively tackles customer revolution and brings digitalization to the spotlight.

With the new Practice Group, Alma Ribanovic will strengthen the existing activities enabling GrECo to provide additional value to the companies by helping them differentiate from competition, attract new and retain existing customers and increase customer loyalty.
Alma Ribanovic comments „There is already a market for affinity solutions and interest is growing. The advantages are attractive and cannot be denied. Affinity is nothing new, but this market segment is currently growing rapidly. With a group-wide affinity practice, GrECo is well positioned to capture market share and become one of the leading risk consultants in this field”.

Alma Ribanovic

Group Practice Leader Affinity

T: +43 50404 180

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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