Aon sues Alliant, 10 former facultative employees

Aon PLC sued Alliant Insurance Services Inc. and 10 of its former employees Monday in U.S. District Court in Chicago, charging it had launched a “premeditated unlawful raid” on Aon’s facultative reinsurance group.

The lawsuit, Aon PLC, Aon Corp. and Aon FAC Inc. v. Alliant Insurance Services Inc., Louis Ambriano et al., charges that beginning on April 19, Alliant used its “illicit playbook” to hire 26 Aon employees, take business from Aon’s top U.S. facultative reinsurance clients and obtain confidential and trade secret information.

The lawsuit seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions against the former employees, a return of all Aon documents in their possession and damages, among other demands.

The lawsuit states Alliant’s conduct was an attempt “to steal Aon’s U.S. facultative reinsurance broking business to gain entry into the reinsurance market and jumpstart the launch of Alliant Re,” and that Alliant did not have a reinsurance division nor did it compete in the reinsurance broking industry before the “raid.”

Alliant’s actions showed “blatant disregard for the Former Employees’ confidentiality, non-solicitation, and non-servicing obligations to Aon,” the lawsuit says.

Alliant announced April 25 that it was introducing a reinsurance brokerage division and had hired Nicholas Ambriano, who as executive managing director had overseen Aon’s national facultative reinsurance operation.

The lawsuit cites dozens of lawsuits filed against Alliant by various brokers.

It charges defendants with violating the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act; breach of contract; intentional interference with contractual relations; tortious interference with prospective economic advantage; breach of fiduciary duty; aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty; and conspiracy.

Aon and Alliant did not respond to requests for comment.

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