HONG KONG, Aug. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire-Asia/ -- Leading insurance company Ageas has announced the appointments of Mr. Gary Crist as its new CEO in Asia, and Mr. Dennis Ziengs as Executive Advisor to its group CEO, Mr. Bart de Smet, and its CEO in Asia. These appointments will take effect on 1 August 2011.
Mr. Crist has held a series of management positions in the insurance industry in a number of Asian countries since 1981. He joined the company in 2002. He was responsible for its entry into new markets in the region. In 2006, he became Managing Director, Commercial Development & Support, with the added remit of providing commercial support to its existing entities.
His predecessor, Mr. Ziengs, who also joined the company in 2002, has been appointed Executive Advisor to the group CEO of Ageas and its CEO in Asia. He will work to raise the profile of Ageas in the Asian insurance industry and among the region's media and regulators. He will also advise Ageas's group and Asia CEOs on specific projects.
"I am delighted to take up this challenging new appointment at a time when Ageas is in an increasingly strong position in Asia with exciting growth opportunities," commented Mr. Crist. "The company has excellent partnerships with leading financial institutions in China, India, Malaysia and Thailand, as well as an enviable position in the Hong Kong market. I am looking forward to building these partnerships further, and I am confident that Ageas will gain ever-greater success in the region."
Mr. Crist also expressed his gratitude to his predecessor. "Dennis' strong leadership, visionary management and day-to-day personal commitment have been instrumental in building Ageas into a powerful and growing business in this part of the world," he said.
Ageas is an international insurance company with a heritage spanning more than 180 years. Ranked among the top 20 insurance companies in Europe, Ageas has chosen to concentrate its business activities in Europe and Asia, which together make up the largest share of the global insurance market. These are grouped around four segments: Belgium, United Kingdom, Continental Europe and Asia and served through a combination of wholly owned subsidiaries and partnerships with strong financial institutions and key distributors around the world. Ageas operates successful partnerships in Belgium, UK, Luxembourg, Italy, Portugal, China, Malaysia, India and Thailand and has subsidiaries in France, Germany, Hong Kong and UK. It is the market leader in Belgium for individual life and employee benefits, as well as a leading non-life player, through AG Insurance, and in the UK, it has a strong presence as the second largest player in private car insurance and the over 50's market. It employs more than 13,000 people and has annual inflows of almost EUR 18 billion.