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Working at A Larger Level | Jean-François Raymond

Jean-François Raymond

President & CEO

Jean-François Raymond’s strongest asset is his capacity to achieve efficiently any tasks within the company. An actuary by trade, his knowledge of the insurance industry and underlying statistics is appreciated in impromptu exchanges with employees. His powerful technology and programming skills brought the creation of numerous efficiency tools. Jean-François is also a seasoned speaker known for his people skills and relationships. He allowed REVAU to shine at an entirely different level, being recognized above the competition.

According to the President and CEO of REVAU, “I’m one that made his way from bottom to top within the company, nor that started from nothing to create such a performing company. I am from the breed of entrepreneurs that takes over an underperforming company and make it better, plain and simple.” He adds, “Success always comes from employees and what I did right was to get my hands dirty and work alongside my colleagues, preaching by example. The open-door approach is mandatory; not a single person within the company should feel a superior is inaccessible.”

For Jean-François, being fair, straightforward, and quick are the three critical lessons every leader should keep in mind while leading the company and their people.

He strongly advises that not all decisions are easy, but a leader has to trust their employee’s intelligence. When done correctly, anyone can understand it is made for the greater good. “Everyone should have the possibility to question a decision to better understand; the worst period we had was when uncertainty was present and gave the impression that executives were working alone at the top of their tower,” says Jean-François. “Never again. Today, company wide communication and town hall forums are implemented and frequent. This is how companies succeed.”

But success doesn’t come easy. “The first 12 months is adaptation and very difficult. The stress level is quite high and chances of failure significantly higher. We had an almost meltdown 4 months in but made it through, those events create character and are part of the learning curve,” explains Jean-François. “We reached a full control after 3 years, that’s when we could see the issues coming and act accordingly. Best advice would be to have strong people around you to work as a team, the stronger the better.”

Recently, GroupAssur became REVAU! Why change? “Because our growth strategy required alignment to maintain our core message. A strengthening of our identity, consistency in organizational values, a strong core ecosystem that unifies our various entities, Evolution Insurance, SC Solution Caution & Eagle Underwriting. REVAU “REVolution Advanced Underwriting, a name that lives up to our mission to be the MGA at the forefront of the commercial insurance revolution,” says Jean-François.

REVAU covers the commercial insurance space; its clients are insurance brokers. With REVAU’s analytics, they could get broader facilities, thus more options and flexibility for their brokers. “We are also now integrating with brokers and insurers for more efficiency because of our technology, which was impossible only a couple of years ago. Our way of doing business is the future of commercial insurance, stakeholders around us realize that and want to be part of it,” adds Jean-François.

REVAU also recently transitioned to Guidewire, a worldwide leader for insurer software, becoming the first MGA to incorporate its entire suite. This was an incredibly bold move considering the tremendous difference in cost and required modification to fit our business model. Now that it’s fully operational, the benefits are equally impressive, raising REVAU to the insurer level and entirely above the competition. This was step one of a technology revolution in the MGA space; once completed, this vision will have created an insurance behemoth.

For Jean-François, the successful implementation of Guidewire in record time while maintaining high profitability and double-digit growth is one of the company’s most significant achievements. This was only possible because of the quality of the company’s staff, “we have the best team in the industry,” elucidates Jean-François. “We don’t hide that United States is our next step. We will continue to grow our Canadian book both organically and by acquisitions, but our U.S. expansion is on top of my list of things to do. This expansion will enable a much-needed cross border solution to our brokers and insured, and likely more capacity from insurers that put their trust in us.”

" We will continue to grow our Canadian book both organically and by acquisitions, but our U.S. expansion is on top of my list of things to do. "

Jean-François Raymond

President & CEO

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