Economical Insurance Strengthens Executive Team

Economical Insurance today announced two significant additions to the executive team. Effective May 1, 2017 , Fabian Richenberger will join as Executive Vice-President (EVP), Commercial Insurance, and Kelley Irwin will join as Senior Vice-President (SVP) and Chief Information Officer (CIO). Existing executive team members Tom Reikman and Alice Keung take on new roles as Chief Distribution Officer (CDO) and Chief Transformation Officer (CTO), respectively.


“Economical is on a path to deliver on our ambition to become one of Canada’s top property and casualty insurers,” said Rowan Saunders , President and CEO of Economical. “We are improving the alignment of our operations and leadership to facilitate growth, deepen our capabilities, and continue to meet shifting customer expectations. Fabian and Kelley will fulfill critical roles as we expand our executive team to align for future success.”


Building for greater operational scale
Responsibility for underwriting and operations is being organized across four primary areas: Broker Sales & Distribution, Personal Insurance, Commercial Insurance, and Claims.


Tom Reikman , previously SVP and Chief Operations Officer at Economical, will deepen his focus on leading broker distribution strategy across Canada as he takes on the role of Chief Distribution Officer. This reflects the company’s strong commitment to continue growing its broker business.


Fabian Richenberger joins as EVP, Commercial Insurance. He is a highly-regarded executive in Canada’s insurance sector, having previously served as President of Northbridge Insurance and most recently as Partner and Head of Financial Services for CarProof Corp. Mr. Richenberger also brings extensive international experience to Economical, beginning his more than 25-year career in his native Switzerland and spending more than 15 years with Zurich Insurance in underwriting and executive roles in Toronto , Chicago , New York , and Zurich .


“Economical has great momentum and the opportunity to help grow the commercial business is incredibly exciting,” said Richenberger. “We will work very closely with our broker partners to make sure that we deliver compelling insurance solutions and outstanding service to achieve our mutual growth aspirations.”


Leading a customer-first transformation
Mr. Saunders also announced the creation of a new Transformation & Technology function. Alice Keung , formerly Chief Information Officer (CIO) at Economical, has been appointed to lead this function, overseeing the development, delivery and execution of the Economical digital strategy, innovation and technology, as Chief Transformation Officer (CTO). Transforming key aspects of the business will drive greater efficiency and effectiveness across the enterprise and produce a superior customer, broker, and employee experience.


Kelley Irwin will join the company as its new SVP and CIO. Ms. Irwin brings extensive experience in technology for financial services, spending more than 25 years with companies such as Sun Life Financial, Symcor, and most recently TD Bank Group, as Vice President and CIO, Corporate Technology. Ms. Irwin is known for being an engaging leader of diverse teams and for her ability to drive improvement through technical solutions. She will lead IT strategy and operations as Economical continues to transform its business platforms.


“The innovation demonstrated by Economical has captured the attention of the insurance industry in the last year,” commented Irwin. “I am motivated and inspired by the opportunity to help the company continue to transform its business and think critically about future customer needs in an industry that is being challenged daily.”


About Economical Insurance
Founded in 1871, Economical is one of Canada’s leading property and casualty insurers, with $2.0 billion in premiums during 2016 and $5.4 billion in assets as at December 31, 2016 . Based in Waterloo , this Canadian-owned and operated company services the insurance needs of more than one million customers across the country. Economical conducts business under the following brands: Economical Insurance, Economical, Western General, Economical Select, Perth Insurance, Sonnet, Petsecure, Economical Financial, and Family Insurance Solutions.