Welcome to our mini-series of CPCU Europe Profiles where we introduce our members through series of questions:
Meet Katarina Marie CPCU, ARe, the CPCU Society Europe Chapter Communications Chair and a Consultant specializing in Parametric insurance!
What is your current role at work? Senior Insurance Consultant in Parametric Insurance at CelsisuPro in Zurich, Switzerland.
How did you come to the industry? After graduation from International Relations at the University of Economics in Bratislava, I was hired by SwissRe and trained on reinsurance. I became passionate about the industry and pursued CPCU & ARe designations.
What are the greatest challenges on your horizon? Find satisfying work life balance.
Who was the greatest influence on your career? Anne Stefani, my very first boss and mentor at Swiss Re Paris office. She combined highly technical actuarial skills with deep understanding of consultative sales and people management. Back in 2011 she was a female negotiator in a highly male dominated industry and I admired that she achieved great things without compromising who she was - a strong female leader. She wasn’t afraid to help others to progress in their career. She is now Deputy Head of Reinsurance at Groupam
What do you enjoy most about your role? Being specialised in parametric insurance - highly niche and at vogue line of business is extremely rewarding. There is so much spotlight on the parametric NatCat and Weather Index solutions, which creates many interesting business opportunities.
Why did you set out to gain the CPCU designation? I wanted to consolidate my insurance and reinsurance knowledge, and fill-in the gaps I had. I also wanted to increase my visibility in the job market, as the CPCU designation is globally recognised.
What do you get out of the CPCU Society and the European Chapter in particular? I want to get the sense of community, exchange with people who share the same passion for the industry, broaden my horizons with my peer’s knowledge and of course socialise and have a bit of a fun along the way!
What developments do you foresee in the industry over the next 10 years? We’ve been speaking about digitization for quite some time now, but I think now it is becoming inevitable. I see more and more insurers and insurance service providers adopting SaaS and API enabled services and moving away from legacy tools to dynamic digital environment. This will create space for new products and better customer experience. Closing the protection gap will become easier and I expect to see more emerging products such as cyber, pandemics and parametric solutions. I also expect to see more sovereign insurance solutions on the backdrop of climate change and necessary risk mitigation measures.
When not doing insurance, what do you do to entertain yourself? Kids entertain me greatly, but when I find a spare time for myself – I love everything related to water: swimming, rowing mostly. During lock-downs I started knitting projects and cake-design for my kids.
What advice do you wish the younger you had been given? I am not sure If the younger me would have listened to any advice! I believe people always make the best choice in the given time with the information at hand, I wouldn’t change anything.
Favourite European city (and why?)? Bratislava: beautiful, colourful, and affordable.
Favourite film (and why?) I am a film geek, can’t choose just one. This is an open invitation to my fellow CPCU Europe Chapter friends to go to the movies!
Favourite book (and why?) I must admit I stopped reading when I entered the industry. But before I enjoyed many authors from the classical literature to the fantasy books. But I still find Bulgakov’s The Master and Margarita one of my favourite reads.