PARIS, Sept. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --XL Group plc's (NYSE: XL) insurance operations ("XL Group") today announced the opening of a new insurance office in Lyon as well as the appointment of Auberi Etienne and Clotilde Bartok to join the team serving middle market companies in France. With full underwriting authority, Mr. Etienne and Mrs. Bartok will be able to respond to the needs of a solid base of companies and broking houses in France's Southeast region. Collaborating closely with underwriters from the Property, Casualty, Professional and Specialty lines working out of Paris, the team in Lyon will serve middle market companies with an annual turnover ranging from approximately EUR 30 million to EUR 300 million and contribute to serving large corporates with a turnover above EUR 300 million. Kadidja Sinz, Country Manager of XL Group's insurance operation in France, said: "Being close to our clients and brokers is what enables us to deliver the high-quality products and services for which we are known. Building on our established reputation of efficient underwriting, global capabilities and claims services, the opening of the new office in Lyon strengthens our presence in the French market and positions us well to serve our growing regional client base, especially those in the regions of Rhone Alpes and Provence-Alpes Cote d'Azur. Daniel Maurer, Chief Underwriting Officer of XL Group's International Middle Market business, added: "Our new office in Lyon, France's 2 nd largest economic centre, is a continuation of our strategy to expand our network in order to provide clients and brokers in key regions direct access to local and international underwriting expertise and services. We are delighted to count on Mr. Etienne's and Mrs. Bartok's experience in the Southeast of France to serve many additional clients and brokers with greater ease and efficiency and further grow our business in the region." As part of XL Group's expansion in France, Mr. Etienne has been appointed as Senior Casualty Underwriter Middle Market, based in the new office in Lyon. Mr. Etienne brings with him over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry. He joined XL Group from Hiscox, where, for the past 4 years, he was Regional Director for South-East France. He previously held various positions in the casualty departments at AIG Europe and Zurich Insurance, with various responsibilities in the Rhône-Alpes region. Ms. Bartok also joins XL Group, as Property Underwriter Middle Market, based in Lyon. Prior to joining XL Group, Ms. Bartok was a property underwriter with Generali for 8 years, based in Lyon. Before that she was with Zurich Insurance and AXA, where she held various actuary roles in Paris and Italy. The Southeast has historically been one of France's most dynamic regions, with a higher economic rate than France's average. Lyon is the second biggest insurance market in France. About XL's Insurance Operations XL Group plc's insurance companies offer property, casualty, professional and specialty insurance products globally. Businesses that are moving the world forward choose XL as their partner. To learn more, visit xlgroup.com/insurance XL Group is the global brand used by XL Group plc's insurance companies.