Willis Re, a unit of Willis Group Holdings, has established a Life Solutions Group to provide the market with advice on risk mitigation and financial leverage.

The Willis Re Life Solutions Group will initially focus on North America, providing capital management, structuring and advisory, and program enhancement solutions for the Life insurance and Annuity marketplace.

In additional, the company has appointed Rick Hodgdon, Mike Kaster and Brian Holland – three reinsurance and risk management experts in New York to lead the new team.

Hodgdon has been appointed as senior vice president, brings over 30 years experience in reinsurance, business development and capital management to his new role at Willis Re. He joins from Fortegra Financial where he was president of the Life Solutions Group.

Kaster as new senior vice president, has over 25 years experience in insurance and has served as chief actuary, corporate actuary and chief product actuary for major insurance organizations, including Conseco, Irish Life of NA, and Allstate International.

Kaster currently chairs the marketing and distribution section for the Society of Actuaries.

Holland as senior vice president, brings 30 years experience in reinsurance marketing and risk management. He joins Willis Re from Mann Conroy Eisenberg & Associates, an international risk advisory firm where he was a principal.

Willis Re executive vice president and managing director Mark Hvidsten said industry capital pressures and the demands for enhanced capital efficiency in the Life and Annuity marketplace have created an opportunity for Willis Re to establish a unique platform that will help clients improve their capital efficiency.