New chief executive returns to her former employer after a stint as Allianz France CFO

Trade credit insurer Euler Hermes has revealed a new name at the top as incumbent chief executive Wilfried Verstraete steps down.

Clarisse Kopff - currently CFO of Allianz France - will take over as chief executive and chairperson of the company board on January 1, 2021, the business announced today.

Verstraete leaves his role after 12 years in the job, but will remain as an adviser to Kopff as she settles in, the company said, as well as retaining a position on the board.

He joined the business during the height of the global financial crisis, and ”transformed the traditional, century-old credit insurer into a data-driven, customer-centric fintech leader with market leading, real-time digital solutions for its clients”.

Kopff began her career with Lehman Brothers in London, then moved to PricewaterhouseCoopers in Paris before joining Euler Hermes’ Paris operation in 2001, and several other senior roles with the business, including CFO, prior to joining Allianz in 2018.

Commenting on her appointment, Kopff said: ”The current crisis is far from over but with his ongoing support, I am prepared to lead the company and accompany our clients and partners through these difficult times.

”It is a great mission for leaders today to instill confidence in tomorrow. On more personal grounds, I am also looking forward to reconnecting with my former colleagues at Euler Hermes,”

Outgoing chief executive Verstraete said he was ”proud to have witnessed the high potential of our teams unleashed, which resulted in expanding our market leadership and raising the bar of unparalleled customer service”.

”Yet, the strength of this company can only be as strong as the ties between our partners. Therefore, I want to thank our clients and partners for their unwavering trust in us throughout these years.”

“Clarisse proved her talent and competence throughout her 16 years at Euler Hermes, where she was instrumental in creating a truly integrated Group reinforced by its strong financial performance.

”I am confident that with her visionary leadership, backed by her experience at Allianz France, Clarisse will take Euler Hermes to the next level and continue setting the standard for customer experience in trade finance.”