Michael Crowe is the Chief Executive Officer of Finance Isle of Man, responsible for development of the Isle of Man’s varied financial services sector.
How have you seen the captive industry develop over the years?
Having worked closely with the captive industry over the last 30 years, principally as an auditor, I have seen a steady but strong growth in the sector, despite an unusually long ‘soft market’ cycle from the early 2000s. During that time, the industry has had to be innovative, reactive and resilient and, I have to say, it has responded magnificently. Regulation has had to keep pace with changing market demands and international standards and, likewise, we have seen some excellent work done here by our regulatory authorities.
What do you think are they key strengths of the Isle of Man captive industry?
These are many and varied but I’ll cover the main ones. I have mentioned regulation already and that is a central strength because users of captive structures need, first and foremost, a first-class governance foundation for their insurance entities. We in the Isle of Man really deliver in that regard.
Obviously we have some of the world’s leading insurance companies operating here which is a real stamp of quality. Supporting those is a top notch ecosystem comprising global banking institutions, accounting firms, actuaries and law firms. All of these component parts are essential in captive insurance delivery and our community of professionals is particularly cohesive and tight-knit, bound together by the Isle of Man Captive Association.
How does the Isle of Man Government support the industry?
We provide support in a variety of ways. My team primarily delivers business development support, driving marketing and PR initiatives and also co-ordinating technical development with the industry and regulator. Government more widely has a raft of financial and technical support systems which are available to existing incumbents and new entrants to the captive space. Public / private partnership is a key tenet of the Island’s economic growth strategy and we are proud of how we execute this.
And what does the future hold for Isle of Man captives?
We are very well placed to grow in line with the current hard market which of course is ideal for captive solutions generally. We have capacity for considerable growth in this space and that is exactly what we are expecting. Feedback from the industry suggests that the use of captives is broadening, particularly in terms of the types of risk being covered. That can only be good news for the development of our industry. And finally, the insurance profession is embracing digital and technology applications at an unprecedented rate which will undoubtedly feed through to captive solutions. As a government agency we are really looking forward to supporting this growth and development.