Hassan El-Shabrawishi Appointed as CEO of AXA International Markets

AXA has announced that Gordon Watson, CEO of AXA Asia and Africa, will transition from his current role on 1 July to become Non-Executive Chairman for AXA Asia. Watson will continue to serve on AXA boards for Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, and Hong Kong.

Hassan El-Shabrawishi, the current CEO of AXA Africa, will become CEO of a newly created AXA International Markets division, covering South-East Asia, India, Latin America, Africa, Turkey, and the Middle East. Hassan is a veteran with an established track record over more than 20 years in the insurance industry. As CEO of AXA Africa since 2018, he has consolidated AXA’s footprint in the continent. He joined AXA in 2010, with previous roles including Chief Innovation Officer for AXA Group, and CEO & Founder of AXA Next, dedicated to business model innovation.

The creation of AXA International Markets division is in preparation for AXA’s next chapter of growth under its 2024-2026 strategic plan, enabling support for promising operations that are at a different stage of maturity and that AXA wants to develop with an entrepreneurial approach. As part of this structure, Japan and Greater China will report directly to AXA Group. Other functions within the AXA International Markets Hub will keep the same reporting lines and senior management will report to Hassan El-Shabrawishi in his new role as CEO.

Under Watson’s leadership, AXA has made impressive progress in building a differentiated position across Asia and Africa. Highlights include defining its position as a champion of holistic health, digitalizing its customer services through the Emma by AXA platform, and deepening its market presence across the region through initiatives like AXA Prime, which expanded the company’s distribution by nurturing a high-quality agent network. Watson has also been a steadfast advocate for mind health within AXA. He established AXA as a founding partner of the Shared Value Initiative in Hong Kong and as Founding Principal Partner of the Mental Health at Work Index™, the world’s first standardized assessment tool for workplace mental health.