Loay al-Naqib, former head of UK operations at the Arab Insurance Group (ARIG), has set up a new Londonbased reinsurance company with capital of $100 million. Naqib says that the new firm, Imperial Fire & Marine Re-Insurance Company, will focus on the tIK market at first before it spreads its business into emerging markets, including the Middle East.

Naqib and a group of investors created the new company by buying 81 per cent of what was previously the UK reinsurance subsidiary of US giant Aetna Services.

Aetna, which sold the company part of a consolidation on its core businesses, will retain a 19 per cent stake in Imperial.

Naqib will be chief executive of the new company.

The company will concentrate on high-value classes of business such as airlines and energy. Naqib says it will be conservative in its strategy and build up its risk book slowly. Naqib, who left ARIG in June, says the new company is not a competitor to his former employer, with whom he has an amicable relationship. ‘We and ARIG are only two out of the hundreds of companies in the UK market.’