Power of inclusion: local events take shape for Dive In festival

Local event details for the 2023 Dive In festival, to be held from September 26-28, are taking shape.

This year there will be around 15 events in Australia and New Zealand.

It is the ninth year the insurance industry’s diversity and inclusion festival has been staged worldwide. The festival achieved its highest turnout with 34,000 attendees last year from 40 countries across 150 events.

Focusing on the 2023 theme Unlocking Innovation: The Power of Inclusion, the hybrid Dive In festival sessions cover topics such as mental health, religious equality, LGBT+ inclusivity, ageism, non-visible disabilities and social mobility.

Here are details of local events currently planned.

September 26:

Aon/BHSI/ Colin Biggers & Paisley: Sharing experiences of inclusion and accessibility in professional settings – Beyond good intentions: a practical approach to fostering inclusive, authentic and safe workplaces

Dual: Creating an inclusive space to allow innovation to thrive

Marsh/AIG/Wotton & Kearney: TBC

NIBA/ Meridian Lawyers/Gilchrist Connell: D&I and the Talent Shortage

QBE: Standing up for What’s Right, the power of inclusion

September 27:

Axa XL/Lockton: AI & Unconscious Bias: The role of ethical AI and the
future of diversity in the workplace

Chubb/Insurance Advisernet: TBC

Marsh/DXC/AIG: Exploring psychological safety as the foundation and innovation as a key driver for greater workforce participation: What you don’t see

Steadfast: TBC

September 28:

Delta Insurance and Sedgwick: Bringing theory and discussion to life – learning from others who have either benefitted or delivered successful inclusion programs


Zurich/Sparke Helmore: Women in STEM

Visit for the latest information.

Registrations open on September 5.

Up and running: incubator Rhodian launches first agency

Rhodian Group has launched its first underwriting agency, Halo Underwriting, after announcing in February it was looking to “create and incubate” agencies in the Australian market.

Halo is a Property and Liability agency backed by Lloyd’s of London, focusing on hard-to-place risks across the SME and mid-market segments.

It will start with two offerings, an Industrial Special Risk product that is being led to market by Halo CEO Peter Takos, and a General Liability product spearheaded by Kym Dalli.

Mr Takos, previously Chief Underwriting Officer at Steadfast Underwriting Agencies, and Ms Dalli, most recently Liability Team Leader at Miramar Underwriting, bring close to 50 years of niche experience to Halo and have strong reputations in the market as leading underwriters.

“We are excited to bring an agency to market that acts as ‘proof of work’ for the Rhodian platform offering,” Rhodian Group CEO Simon Lightbody said.

“By bringing a 100% owned agency to market, we have had the opportunity to build out a framework of people and processes across back office services, technology and capacity support that will accelerate agencies coming through the Rhodian pipeline.”

Rhodian launched earlier this year with US-based specialty wholesale distributor Amwins taking a minority stake in the business. It will provide its underwriting agency partners the support they need to grow their operations so that management can focus on product development and distribution.

Now that Halo is up and running, Rhodian is already planning its next agency launch.

“With Halo in market, we are now focusing on the development of our pipeline agencies,” Mr Lightbody said.

“Accident and Heath will be the next cab off the rank, which we are very excited about.”

Mr Takos, who is also Rhodian co-founder and Chief Underwriting Officer, says the reception from brokers has been very good.

“In my visits around the country brokers have told us that Halo is required because the insurers’ appetite is narrowing more and more,” he told Insurance News.

“Halo is a response to the market’s needs from brokers needing solutions on those complex risks.”

Mr Takos says Halo is planning to introduce a Business Package offering next for the SME and mid-market segments.