First of all, the numbers. Both conferences had strong attendance, both up from 2022 levels, together with a full exhibit hall. Then secondly the content. As in 2022, almost all presenters were upbeat about their own captive, or, in the case of service providers, their pipeline of new and expanding clients. And then lastly, the “chatter.” A standard opening question of mine is, “how’s business” and this was almost invariably met with a plaintive request for more resources in terms of staff, because there is so much business to take on.
So how does this inform the VCIA as we develop our services to members? Some of the hotels for our own conference in August of this year are already approaching capacity, and this is before we even open registration in May! So, we are working with our partners in the Burlington lodging industry to secure additional rooms and even additional hotels to meet the expected high demand in a small marketplace. Then, addressing some of the workforce issues that I’ve heard, we are about to announce some strong new initiatives that will hopefully pay dividends in expanding the available workforce for the captive industry, especially in Vermont.
Lastly, it only remains for me to recognize March 17th, Lá Fhéile Pádraig sona daoibh, go athas sé lúcháir orainn go léir!
I am lucky enough to moderate a conversation with the above captive financial data wizards, and I wanted to hear from them beforehand why they are excited for next week’s webinar.
During the webinar, Amy Angell of Milliman, Inc., plans to review surplus levels, identify ways to monitor claims performance, and to evaluate whether risk management programs are having the desired outcomes on the loss experience. She’ll do this all by looking at the hard data of the financial records of the 2021 EOY domiciled captives of the State of Vermont, listed by type of captive and by industry type.
Next to Amy will be her accomplished colleagues, Becky Aitchison, Captive Insurance Examiner for the State of Vermont DFR, and Bill Piel, President of the Opus Institutional Markets.
Becky is basically the source keeper the data aggregated and shared annually by the DFR. She will explain the key ratios used by the DFR for the surveillance of your captive’s financial health, and what markers she looks for in determining how a certain captive may or may not be thriving.
From an investment perspective, Bill will let you in on the primary reasons for establishing an investment policy and how the DFR data can help assist with developing an appropriate asset allocation unique to your captive. He will also identify ways to monitor investment performance and evaluate whether results are having the desired impact on your financial statements.
What makes Bill excited for the webinar? “With negative year-to-date investment returns reducing both profitability and surplus for captives, it is an opportune time to discuss best practices in benchmark selection for insurance entities that not only considers investment risk tolerances, but also the connection to the risks being underwritten by the captive.”
So, we have the expert who comes up with the data, and the other experts who will explain how to use the latest data to your benefit. It’s a win win!
I look forward to facilitating a data-driven conversation that looks into how your captive – and the Vermont captive landscape at large – has faired in the last financial year, and what that may say about the future. Remember to register, and “see you” there!