Delta Insurance (New Zealand) Ltd has appointed Adrian Sweeney as Underwriting Manager for their liability and speciality lines insurance business in New Zealand.

British-born, Mr Sweeney has almost four decades’ experience in the global insurance business and joins Delta following a period of consulting in commercial insurance transformation and for AXA UK and providing insurance investment advice for various private equity firms.

Prior to that, he was Chief Underwriting Officer – UK and International for RSA Insurance Group, a role he took up after 25 years with Zurich Insurance, culminating in a position as Global Chief Underwriting Officer for their Commercial Business.

Mr Sweeney takes up the role vacated by Dinesh Murali who was appointed CEO and Managing Director of Delta Insurance NZ in April this year.  He will lead a team of 15 and report to Mr Murali.

Mr Murali says Mr Sweeney’s appointment was a significant one in terms of the liability insurance space, which was changing and evolving dramatically in the face of a technology boom, increasing litigation, pandemic threats, more focus on director’s duties, the growing importance of Environmental, Social and Governance requirements, and the increase in cyber-attacks.

“The whole insurance and risk solutions market is currently very volatile and has put a strain on the capacity of insurers in the financial lines and casualty space, which had led to many withdrawing from the market, increasing pricing dramatically or reducing their underwriting appetite. At the same time, there hasn’t been a lot of innovation in that space,” says Mr Murali.

“We’re keen to explore the evolving risk management area and its impact on liability, and ensure our offerings are up-to-speed and offer our customers protection where it matters most. Insurance is much more than just a service to compensate losses; Delta’s view is that it’s just as important to help our clients manage their risk better – and support them from a pre-loss risk mitigation perspective as well as during, or after, an actual insurance claim or litigation event.

“Adrian brings a wealth of leadership and underwriting experience across many countries as well as strong skills in transformation and new product development.  He will be leading our strategy for the profitable growth of our liability and specialty lines product portfolio – which Delta sees as a critical strategic focus, not just for our New Zealand operations but also our growing presence in the Asia-Pacific region.”

Mr Sweeney says he’s looking forward to leading Delta’s developments in the liability space and the opportunity to bring changes to the insurance market that anticipate the challenges facing business and the community. “That’s what attracted me to Delta in the first place – its innovative spirit and passion for protecting clients with great products rather than simply compensating losses.”

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