siam 23 - Mapfre


siam 23 - Mapfre
A tribute
his is a special issue of our international newsletter, which we have prepared following the death of Primitivo de
Vega, until a few weeks ago Chairman of
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA. With this issue we
want not only to pay him a well-deserved tribute, but also to look back on his professional career.
Three MAPFRE ASISTENCIA generations: Rafael Senén, Primitivo de Vega and Gerardo
Hernández de Lugo. 8 May 1996.
We hope this will serve for those who had
the chance to know and work with him to
remember him, and for those who knew
him less well or worked less closely with
him to get to know him.
pag 4 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
We have tried to make space for each of
his phases in MAPFRE: his beginnings
moving around Spain, the imprint Asturias
made on him, his Mexican experience and
his more international business project.
Our sincere thanks to all those who have
collaborated by writing and sharing with
us their memories of each of these phases: José Antonio Pardo, Antonio Pérez
Alonso and José Luis Sánchez Báscones.
Also, of course, thanks to Manuel Ocón
and Gerardo Hernández de Lugo.
Before continuing, I would like to thank
José Manuel Martínez, Chairman of SISTEMA MAPFRE, for the words he devoted
to Primitivo in his speech at the MAPFRE
General Shareholders Meeting and which
are reproduced in this issue of SIAM
NEWS. And I want to do this for a number
of reasons. Firstly because I know that he
felt great friendship and affection for
Primitivo. Secondly, because once again
he shows his support and faith in
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA which, in these
moments, is of great significance to our
organization. José Manuel Martínez has
always supported MAPFRE ASISTENCIA,
helping us in the hard times and congratulating us in the good times. Primitivo de
Vega always recognized this and told us so
when he had the chance.
As for myself, I met Primitivo de Vega in
Miami at the end of the winter of 1994
and I said goodbye to him in Madrid at the
end of the winter of 2006. They were
twelve years in which we shared many
things, faced many situations, got to know
many countries. But above all, they were
twelve years of creating a corporate spirit.
I was in my thirties and he was in
his fifties, a good combination.
Primitivo was the real architect of
what this company is today.
Throughout the pages of this
issue you will have the chance to
see how, with his strong personality, he swept everyone along
with him and started to build a
especially from 1996. Expansion
and diversification, innovation in
products, the elderly, tourism,
“With him time brought trust; trust brought
affection and affection, friendship”
These are expressions which he introduced to the company. With his strategic
vision he made us part of a great project
and, what is more important, made us
believe in our own possibilities.
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA finished year 1994
with revenues of 48 million euros, profits
of 2.5 million euros, a presence in 14
countries and 404 members of staff.
Primitivo de Vega has left us with revenues in 2005 of 475 million euros, profits of 14.3 million euros, a presence in 40
countries and 2,828 members of staff.
But his professional achievements were
only one of the aspects I had an opportunity to share with him. In the personal
sphere, time brought trust; trust brought
affection and affection, friendship.
To him and to Pilar, who knows that both
I and all Primi’s disciples are by her side.
And we cannot forget the hundreds of
friends he made everywhere he went.
MAPFRE gave Primitivo the opportunity to
travel all over the world, to savour different cultures, get to know far-flung places.
He knew how to make the most of this
opportunity. He made friends who today
miss him from nearby America to far-off
China, from green Ireland to dreamy
With Primitivo, the world became a smaller
place for MAPFRE ASISTENCIA and with
him we were able to go further afield.
So, to propose and achieve greater
challenges for our company will be the
best tribute we can pay to his memory.
Rafael Senén
Managing Director and CEO of
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 5
“We aimed to
go very far”
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA Executive Committee, 4 March 2004.
t was January 1969 and it was very cold in Vitoria.
Both Primitivo and I were finding it hard going.
MAPFRE had sent me to this office after working
in the Badajoz and Alicante offices. Primitivo, as
Claims Manager of the North-Centre Subheadquarters,
came from Pamplona two days a week to supervise
claims management and train the manager.
To those who met Primitivo later, perhaps recently, I
can tell them that his character as a young lawyer was
the same as when he was Chairman of MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA: always looking to the future, thinking
big, motivating and, in his personal dealings, always
stylish, gentlemanly and with a romantic and affectionate touch which always remained with him.
These were times in which young people were almost
entirely trained by spending time in different offices,
taking on the tasks they were allocated in accordance
with their skills. In this area, Primitivo could have
been said to have a good road map: he joined in
Madrid and spent time in this city’s offices and those
of Valladolid and La Coruña before being sent to
Pamplona. As a young lawyer, he had been allocated
tasks within the legal area, although his interest was
always more linked to sales organization, then socalled “production”.
In those days, MAPFRE was taking off in all areas and
this generated a great deal of work in the office, keeping
us busy until late in the night in the offices at Manuel
Iradier, 22, together with Alfredo Larrea and Jesús
But our dislike of the cold, the fact that we were far
from our families and had moved around within the
organization was not all we had in common. We were
both 25 years old, we wanted to do important things
in our professional lives and, of course, we also
wanted to go far.
pag 6 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
They were times of extremely hard work, of making
ourselves known and often defending not only the
insurance business, still not well understood (for many,
automobile insurance was their first insurance), but
also a MAPFRE which was still taking shape, with the
passion afforded by our faith in the fact that it was
the best company (and it really was) and that we were
the best (this should always be said by others, but we
believed it to be so), and with the element of generosity associated with the MAPFRE spirit.
“Always looking to the future, thinking big,
always stylish and affectionate”
The rapid development of practically all the activities
of the office, both in insurance and in the financial
business carried out by Juan Antonio Zárate (who also
produced insurance policies), meant that Primitivo
had to devote more time to Vitoria and so we decided
to share a small apartment and reduce our expenses
which, small though they were, were hard on our
scant finances.
When we did not have other matters to attend to, we
stayed late in the office and then, after a usually frugal, traditional dinner (that is, lots of fried eggs) we
would go for a drink in a café.
I remember Ascot and La Coquette where, over
drinks, we would talk about MAPFRE (of course!).
These were times of strategy, of discussing, above all,
those things which, over a drink, with great sense of
humour and the right atmosphere, provided us with
the relaxation we needed to face the next day.
Our relationship continued
along the same lines over
37 years, affectionate and
However, there was an important difference between
us: Primitivo had a Seat 600 car and I did not. I did
not regret this, because the control over its use for
work was so strict that he had to use a lot of time and
imagination to justify weekly mileage and petrol consumption, balanced with work routes. It had a Huelva
registration plate, which in those times in Vitoria
made it rather notorious.
Primitivo’s 600 gave us some great times and gave
rise to some anecdotes from those times: I remember
we were fined 500 pesetas by the Vitoria municipal
police. So that it would not get back to MAPFRE, we
offered to pay the fine on the spot, but the policeman
only had receipts for five pesetas, so we got 100
receipts for five pesetas which we kept for some time
as a memento.
At the end of that year we were both sent to new postings. I went to Guadalajara, from there to open the
Alcalá de Henares office, which I finally managed to
do, and Primitivo to Andalusia (Cordoba and Jerez),
from where he would shortly be posted to Asturias.
There he developed his ideas and was highly successful. He met Piluca and his heart became once
and for all Asturian.
I can say that he was happy right up to the end.
Our shared desire to continue seeing one another to
talk of this and that has been unexpectedly and
painfully frustrated, but Primitivo is now part of our
life and will be with us always.
Juan Antonio Pardo
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 7
From Cabo Vidío
or most of my life at MAPFRE I have been connected to Primitivo and I still find it hard to
change from the present tense, as if the person
was gradually fading away, but has not completely
gone. Most certainly, like all those who make history,
he will never really be gone.
I met Primitivo in Alicante, where he spent his summer holidays and where I was at what I believed
would be my first and last posting with MAPFRE.
Someone told him there was an Asturian around and
he sought me out. After giving me the third degree he
asked me, “How about coming to Asturias?” That first
August the idea did not attract me. The second time
I was less sure and, at the end of 1980, I succumbed
to his description of paradise.
23 February 1980. How can I forget that day! Mieres
(Asturias), a grey, rainy, cold day. In short, a miserable
day. I had never been in the coalfields. Primitivo, as
always, turned the contrast with Alicante, from where
I had just arrived, into something fantastic. The
Caudal River was the Mississippi whose waters ran a
little rough, Turón had a soft sandy beach 30 kilometres away and Numa Gilhou Street was Las Palmeras
Avenue without its palm trees. And I believed it!
“Ten years of relentless
work. Selling and growing”
In 1982 León became part of the Asturias
Subheadquarters. We were starting to get big. One
Day of America in Asturias, when Asturias commemorates its past greatness, I received a call with clear,
concise orders: “Go immediately to Mr. De Vega’s
office in Uría Street”. I thought the same as you
would have: ‘what have I done?’ But it was not a bad
offer – in the next paradise, León, it did not rain so
much, almost not at all, sometimes it snowed, but not
much, the cold was a legend from the Stone Age and
my Cantabrian Sea was only 150 kilometres away.
One day they would build a motorway so we would not
have to cross the Pajares Pass and I only had to open
5, 10, 25, 50 offices. First in towns with over 5,000
inhabitants, then those with 2,000, until there were
no more towns on the long list I had been given.
I became so obsessed that when I went to Aragon, in
every village we went through, however small it was, I
would ask the director, “and do we have an office
They were ten years of relentless work, sell, sell, sell,
a chorus that ended with grow, grow, grow. Each year
finished up with the negotiations for the next year’s
budgets, a kind of chess game, white playing with
enormous figures and winning, black playing with
small figures and, as always, losing! Although to
make you want to play again the next year he would
say, “You’re a devil pixueto1, how you love a fight!”
And I believed that too!
View of Cabo Vidío.
1.- Note: A typical Asturian expression, roughly translating as “good old fellow”.
pag 8 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
Then a break. He went to Mexico, Mexico lindo, in his
words “an impressive country”. He came back for the
summers, just like those colonials who made a fortune in the Americas, and made us all green with envy
with tales of cities with millions of inhabitants and no
office opened there yet. He told us wonders, half real,
half fable, stories which caught our attention, hooked us.
In 1994 he returned to MAPFRE ASISTENCIA. He had
to win over the big wide world, to develop SIAM. He
was in such a hurry to do things that he talked of
things for the future, the future of dreams, of those
with great dreams, dreams so great they never end.
Long live those who have dreams and follow them in
vain, as if life would never end!
He was a man whose lifestyle was from the south, who
always called olives by their southern name olivas
instead of aceitunas, the aperitif was a ceremony with
ice-cold beer and little prawns from Huerva1. He was
determined to have an olive tree in his garden and
that it should produce olives! Probably to prove that a
southerner can lay down roots even here, in Asturias,
without growing musty. He was an olive tree transplanted in paradise, where olive trees are rarely
found. He was convincing when he greeted people
with, “ye así paisano!”2, he almost sounded Asturian,
all he needed was to support the Sporting de Gijón
football team.
“It is impossible to imagine the Asturias Subheadquarters
without Primitivo or Primitivo without Asturias”
Without his commercial strength, without his obsession for training, for youth, for teams, for his
brochures, for opening offices, direct sales, rankings,
for any commercial idea which meant selling a little
more than the rest.
He was from the warm south, with a strong family
attachment to the north; he always missed a few more
rays of sun. He needed to get the damp out of his
bones. But he would return to his porch in Luanco,
where it was forbidden to talk about work and
MAPFRE. Don’t believe it. There, sheltered from the
harsh winds of life and cold winds of the north, in an
Ibizan-style house (always that contrast between
north and south), we would feel a part of his family.
It was a house always full of life and people, always
happy, always kind, always making you feel at ease:
-“It’s four in the morning, Piluca, we should go”.
-“But why are you in such a rush? There’s no rush!
There’s never any rush in this house”.
Boss, this year we will go back to Cabo Vidío, to
Artedo beach, I will show you another beautiful
landscape, one of those you never saw, because you
cannot open offices there, there are no people, only
silence. With a little luck the sea will be a deep
greyish blue with little white breakers, and we will
remember that the grim reaper, who in Asturias they
call la raya, is where he always was, even though we
cannot see him. We shall make crazy suggestions
which always end up in the same place. Our other
halves, as you call them, will laugh teasingly at us,
because we will continue to do the same things.
And remember Primitivo, wherever you are now, for
God’s sake, once and for all, stop opening offices!
Antonio J. Pérez Alonso
NORTHWESTE Territorial Managing Director
1.)Note: Huerva is the Andalusian form of pronouncing Huelva.
2.)Note: A typical Asturian greeting, roughly translating as “Hello there fellow countryman!”
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 9
ew today can imagine that Primitivo de Vega, the
driving force behind the most international
MAPFRE company and its growing presence in
the most remote parts of the planet, was known for
being nervous about flying.
As an example, at the acts in which MAPFRE gathered
together the territorial organization in Madrid, those
of us who came from Asturias and León, with
Primitivo at the forefront, were famous for our convoy
of cars, far from the noise of Barajas airport.
This introduction on the subject of air travel will help
you to understand better how we all felt when we
found out, in 1990, that the Asturias Subheadquarters had been twinned with the recently acquired
Company Seguros Tepeyac in Mexico, which had been
assigned to us as part of the strategy of introducing
the new companies in America to SISTEMA MAPFRE,
in a warm, efficient manner.
In Guanajuato, 1993. With Pedro Pacheco, Director of the MAPFRE
TEPEYAC Life Insurance Unit and José Luis Sánchez Báscones.
And so he set us out on a new phase which, in many
ways, is still alive. The main features were dynamism,
renovation and modernization of the areas most related to the commercial structures of marketing and services for salespersons and clients.
Mexico: the first step forward on Primitivo’s
international adventure
This twinning had two immediate effects: all of us in
Asturias talked about Mexico and we started to
receive visits from Seguros Tepeyac directors.
As it is extremely difficult, in such a short space, to
summarize the projects launched during these years,
I would just like to briefly outline some of these.
By then Primitivo’s dedication and that of all his closest
collaborators from Oviedo was intense: maps of
Mexico in offices, sales reports on desks, market
data, brochures with the Seguros Tepeyac products,
etc., blended naturally into our daily work.
The headquarters of the company Seguros Tepeyac, in
Mexico called the casa matriz, occupied a building
located in the centre of the federal district, an area
which went down hill greatly after the great earthquake of 1985, becoming one of the most dangerous
and uninhabitable areas of Mexico City.
But he wanted more. He already had two directors in
the country, Ramón Antón, controlling and auditing
the finances and yours truly in the commercial organization. And then in 92, a year of universal exhibitions, and with Piluca and the three young children,
he turned up in Mexico, at Tepeyac. The Managing
Director at the time, José Luis Llamosas, was
appointed Chairman of the company and De Vega
took over his previous position.
pag 10 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
As Managing Director of Seguros Tepeyac, Primitivo
encouraged an active search for a new headquarters
for the company in a building which, thanks to its
size, design and location, lived up to the image which
MAPFRE should offer the market, while also offering
its employees a safer and more comfortable workplace.
After visiting many buildings, an ultra-modern building was purchased in the Interlomas area, which is
currently the registered offices of MAPFRE TEPEYAC.
I should also highlight the project for updating the
company’s corporate image, incorporating, not without
great internal discussion, the MAPFRE clover leaf
into the company’s logo and its development from its
classic sepia and black to the reds of our group worldwide.
During his leadership, Tepeyac consolidated its position as the leading and healthiest company of the socalled medium companies on the market thanks,
amongst others, to a number of initiatives introduced
by him and which today, suitably developed, have
been adapted in other companies.
In 1992, both the employees (who in Mexico are
called clerks) and the insurance agents, were paid
their salaries and commissions in cash every fortnight. Primitivo then proposed the task of direct debit
payment of the receipts (something unknown to the
banks themselves in this country at the time) and
payment of salaries and commissions by bank transfer. A detail which gives us an idea of how difficult
this task was is that at that time in Mexico neither the
telephone, or electricity or credit cards were paid
through a bank current account, but had to be paid
personally at the respective offices.
Finally, De Vega conveyed to the organization the
objective of giving a strong boost to opening new
branches throughout the country, rapidly reaching the
first 100 sales points. At the same time, and in order
to directly receive the incidents that this expansion
might produce for Tepeyac clients and agents, the
service called the Green Telephone was created.
All complaints, suggestions and claims received
through this service were reported directly to the
General Management, without passing through any
filter, with the commitment to provide a full response
within 24 or 48 hours to all those received.
When De Vega returned to Spain to take over as
Chairman of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, the Green
Telephone service was one of the first of many innovations he introduced in his phase as the company’s
top executive.
New York, 1991, De Vega with José Luis Sánchez
Báscones and Ramón Antón López, Director of
Organization and Control, MAPFRE TEPEYAC
On behalf of all the team that Primitivo de Vega led
in those times, I take this opportunity to corroborate
that many of the reforms undertaken then are still in
use today and form part of the company’s present
development, and that his memory and example of
enthusiasm left a deep impression on the organization.
José Luis Sánchez Báscones
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 11
In 1986, MAPFRE decided to include a new activity
in its offer of services, travel assistance, which I was
in charge of creating and setting up. Here too, many
years before he was appointed Executive Chairman of
the company, perhaps as a premonition, he was a leading pioneer in the
introduction of this new activity. I
remember as simple anecdotes that,
enthusiastic about this new service,
his regional directorate for Asturias
placed the first MAPFRE ASISTENCIA sign on a tow truck, not an easy
task in those early times, and it was
there too that the first providers convention was held.
11th MAPFRE ASISTENCIA-SIAM Convention. Tunisia, March 2004.
ow hard it is for me in these times to think clearly and unravel memories of this old friend
and colleague who has left us so suddenly and
I met Primitivo de Vega many, perhaps thirty-five,
years ago when in the “Café Gijón” in Madrid, Mr.
Ignacio Larramendi introduced him to me as the next
Regional Director for Asturias. Since then, in the
different positions I have held in my long professional life with MAPFRE, I had many opportunities to see
for myself the efficiency and enthusiasm Primitivo
put into every initiative introduced by MAPFRE, even
when these did not form part of his direct insurance
responsibility. In this way he facilitated the work of
those of his colleagues responsible for developing
them. This was a continual element throughout his
life which he also passed on into the personal sphere,
if necessary.
pag 12 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
Later, in his Mexican adventures, his
faith in the assistance project and the
belief that it should be introduced on
the continent, served to ease the way
for its future development.
In time, our corporate postings would bring us together
on the same ship, MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, under his
captaincy as President.
The well considered and decided decision to boost
the international introduction of the company which
had already commenced required that we should “see
the world”, markets and business possibilities. We
faced many, long trips across half the world. We only
differed on one matter: I liked to be the first to board
the plane and he liked to be last and, if there was a
bit of last-minute excitement, so much the better.
This time, he is the first to leave. He has left me on
the ground with deep sadness for a friend who has
gone and with a flood of memories which I still do not
know how to take in.
Farewell, Primitivo!
Gerardo Hernández de Lugo
Ex-Managing Director of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
His great project:
odesty apart, I like to think that I know people pretty well and sometimes what lies inside surpasses the exterior image. Primitivo de
Vega was a great professional, especially commercially, but he was human and passed that humanity
on to others. It was easy to talk to him and this virtue, which not all of us cultivate, made him reach the
people around him. He has made great professional
teams, but he has also made friends.
In 1984, when I joined MAPFRE to merge together all
the finance companies and develop the MAPFRE
FINANZAS project, I met Primitivo de Vega, who suggested we held our first convention in Oviedo. Many
of us arrived who had worked independently from one
another, but by the time we left Asturias we were a
cohesive, excited team. And our wives were friends.
Primitivo and Piluca played an extremely important
role in furthering this climate created in the free time
at meetings.
He was enthusiastic about new projects. As a great
commercial professional he paid attention to innovations and saw how a project would favour MAPFRE
and how to develop it in his Asturias Subheadquarters. When in 1986-1987 MAPFRE ASISTENCIA was
set up to assist our vehicle-owning insureds, the
Company’s Managing Director, Hernández de Lugo,
organized a providers meeting at each subheadquarter. The tow-truckers came to these meetings with
their wives and with their spectacular tow trucks bearing the MAPFRE sign. The Asturias meeting was a
great success in which Primitivo participated actively.
Who could then have told him that he would be the
great transformer of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, turning it
into this model multinational company, with 38 companies with the same MAPFRE style in different
countries. I heard him at the first meetings with us,
shortly before my retirement, talk of a “multi-product,
multi-service company”. This was in 1994. Today
that idea is a reality and it is his creation.
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA conventions have always been
with wives. We all know that behind every great man
there must be a great woman. This was instilled
by Mr. Larramendi and it is the style of each MAPFRE
In Mexico, 1986.
Primitivo developed this idea, with Piluca’s help,
aware of the fact that in the various countries the
companies are small and need guidelines, control and
affection. It is wonderful to attend a convention and
witness the friendship that exists between one and all.
In 1994 I reached retirement age and Primitivo de
Vega took over as head of the company. I enjoyed a
further five years as Chairman of the Board, following
his projects and successes. In addition to his human
aspect, which I mentioned previously, he was an
experienced professional trained in Spain and
A number of acts were held when I finally left the
Board at the end of 1999, but the farewell from the
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA Board and top management
was an act especially prepared by Primitivo de Vega.
It was the man who did so, and at the event I found
that he had invited three of my children. Can there be
anything as wonderful as the company of one’s children on such an emotional day? Doubtless he would
have gone further and asked, “Can there be a greater
lesson for children than to see their father on such a
You, the men and women of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA,
have lost a great Chairman. You were his team and
nobody could touch you. He gave you freedom in your
work and demanded responsibility from you.
I have lost a great friend who I never want to forget.
Manolo Ocón
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 13
n September 1994 after a long
professional career with MAPFRE,
most of which had been spent as
Director of the Asturias Subheadquarters, Primitivo de Vega
CEO. His last posting for three years
with MAPFRE TEPEYAC, Mexico,
had provided him with the international vision that would be of such
help to him in this new phase in
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA had been set up in 1986 as a
department of MAPFRE MUTUALIDAD, but it came
of age in 1990 when it became an insurance,
represented an about-turn with regards to demands at
all levels. His experience, effort, dedication and,
above all, his vision as an insurance manager soon
had an effect on the various departments of the com-
reinsurance and services company with an international vocation spearheading SISTEMA MAPFRE’s
introduction to new markets.
During the first eight years, the company had commenced a process of internationalization which had
enabled it to be introduced in 11 countries. In the following 12 years, under Primitivo de Vega’s leadership,
the company would come to achieve a presence in 40
countries and to carry out business in 70, which gives
an idea of the impulse he provided for this area.
He developed three main lines of management in
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA: the international drive which
has made the company one of the three most important assistance multinationals; the creation of teams,
both in central services and in the business units of
each country, to manage this growth; and diversification, both in assistance products and other business
lines. The arrival of the new CEO to the company
pag 16 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
pany, although the spirit of assistance was always
maintained at the core of the company.
“Management means paying attention to each of the
various aspects that constitute the good corporate
government. A manager must control every detail:
sales, costs, accounting, IT, public relations, products, legal and fiscal aspects, human resources, etc.
And management is the art of directing. And directing
is making things happen, making companies work in
the search to attain the objectives established”. (VIII
SIAM Congress, February 2000).
However, in his long-term vision De Vega considered
it essential to introduce the methods of an insurance
company, with which he was so familiar, into
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA. This is how the activity of a
number of departments which had not previously
existed commenced: the Technical, Customer Service
and Agent Services departments.
In this way, Primitivo de
Vega laid the foundations
for the new path which
would take in later years.
“My mission is organizational and strategy-making. But
the merit for the results is
yours only”, he stated in an
editorial of the magazine
SIAM NEWS, in 1997.
Official presentation of Primitivo de Vega to the company’s management team by José Manuel Martínez.
2nd MAPFRE ASISTENCIA-SIAM Convention, Miami, May 1994.
In those first years MAPFRE ASISTENCIA maintained
the working philosophy of a young company which its
owners at the time (MAPFRE MUTUALIDAD and
CORPORACIÓN MAPFRE) required should lead an
assistance project which would be the model for the
organization. For this reason, the greatest drive was
for the International Development Department, run by
Rafael Senén, who was the main support in all the
plans which Primitivo de Vega developed in the following years together with Gerardo Hernández de
“We must be open to other activities
in order to take greater advantage of
the technical and human resources
available to us”
(ITIC Conference, Barcelona, 1999)
At first analysis it seemed clear that MAPFRE ASISTENCIA was dependent upon a few important contracts and that a particular feature was that as a
mono-product company (Roadside Assistance) it was
particularly vulnerable.
The objective for the first years was therefore welldefined: to become a multi-product company geared
towards providing its shareholders with, in addition to
a good image in foreign markets, financial results in
keeping with the type of company which MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA was going to become in the coming
With these ideas passed on to the company’s top
management (Gerardo Hernández de Lugo and Rafael
Senén) at the beginning of 1995 IBERO
ASSISTÊNCIA Portugal began to market Home
Assistance, with similar features to those offered by
SEGUROS GENERALES in Spain, becoming a pioneer on the path which all the MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
companies would take. Gradually the portfolio of
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA products became consolidated
and, in addition to automobile and home product
lines, other programmes soon followed for banks and
insurance companies.
Both these, and the rest of the products and services
which the company would add in the future, were also
identified by the high quality of service which was
stamped on them. “We must take into account”, De
Vega always pointed out, “that we are not only seeking leadership in business volume, but also in quality
of services. We aim to be the best and, only if it is
appropriate and possible, the biggest”.
“Travel insurance covers are no longer considered
to be complimentary to other insurance policies.
They have their own personality and life and are
successfully marketed as independent products”
(ITIC Conference,, 1999)
In this same year 1995, and as part of the diversification undertaken by the company, MAPFRE ASISTENCIA launched Travel Insurance for private individuals in Spain. In spite of the fact that other assistance companies offered travel products, these programmes had not been strategic until his arrival.
Conference at Seguros Tepeyac. Mexico, 1993.
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 17
Thanks to his knowledge of MAPFRE’s commercial
networks and his personal involvement in the marketing and commercial areas, within a very short period
of time a Commercial department was set up in
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA which gave priority to the
development of travel insurance.
Under the management of the previous Managing
Director, Gerardo Hernández de Lugo, who also had a
good understanding of the Sistema’s internal organization in Spain, the figure of the commercial adviser
specializing in MAPFRE ASISTENCIA programmes
began to be introduced to the subheadquarters. This
was the first time that the MAPFRE Network had a
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA product for individual sale and
with the same features as those offered by the products
of other operative units.
The CEO’s Mexican experience also played a role in
this project with the creation of the Green Telephone.
By means of a phone call, the people attending the
call were in charge of giving the agent a quote as well
as issuing the travel policy over the phone and immediately sending it. This experience was a pioneer in
MAPFRE with regards to issuing policies, which until
then had been carried out via traditional channels.
Official Inauguration of URUGUAY ASISTENCIA, 25 July 1996.
At the close of 1995, Asistencia’s progress was
unstoppable in the international area (with 50 percent
more companies) and it had new business lines.
Internally, the company had taken advantage of this
time to extend and improve its teams with the addition of Alfredo Muñoz as Financial Director, Félix
Mansilla, Legal Director, and José Manuel Martínez
Iglesias, International Commercial Director, and was
ready to make that dream which De Vega often spoke
of come true: to make MAPFRE ASISTENCIA the leading MAPFRE company in the insurance sector at
world level.
“The gradual ageing of the population and
the growing needs for security and comfort
imposed by modern life have encouraged
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA to introduce a new activity:
Teleassistance.” (1995)
Inauguration of CARIBE ASISTENCIA, 1995. One of Primitivo de Vega’s
first acts after joining MAPFRE ASISTENCIA.
Gradually, the MAPFRE ASISTENCIA commercial
agents arrived at the subheadquarters and became a
part of their commercial dynamic. In this way, as well
as the international area, the internal market was also
considered to be strategic and priority area.
Meanwhile, the opening of new markets and the introduction of the company into these markets speeded
up. Between 1994 and 1995 six new companies were
opened in Bahrain, Greece, France, Peru, Ecuador
and the Dominican Republic. De Vega, Hernández de
Lugo and Senén made an increasing number of trips
to new countries with a view to achieving a rapid
development of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA.
pag 18 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
Thanks to the new strategic focus introduced by De
Vega and adopted by all members of staff, the move
from the MAPFRE MUTUALIDAD contract to becoming an internal department of this company, in the
middle of 1996, did not put a stop to MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA’s progress.
At De Vega’s request, Martínez Iglesias travelled to
the United States to get to know the workings of a
product called Teleassistance which De Vega insisted,
“fits perfectly into our assistance philosophy”. It is
with this product and in the same year, 1996, that De
Vega’s clear vision can be said to have been born
regarding a niche of the population: that of the elderly and dependent people who, in the following years,
have become an important client for the SISTEMA
1997 to 1999 were hectic years as, if 1996 closed
with 15 companies, in the three following years 15
more were opened, enabling the size of SIAM (SISTEMA INTERNACIONAL DE ASISTENCIA MAPFRE)
to increase: Germany, Guatemala, Panama, the
Philippines, Russia, Costa Rica, United Kingdom,
Belgium, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Bolivia
and Paraguay. This gives a clear idea of the pace of
work which De Vega imprinted on and demanded
from his managers. Hernández de Lugo’s brown suitcase became famous in all Latin American countries.
New names were added to the MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
team in these years: Begoña González, as Director of
Information Systems and José Luis Gurtubay, as
Director of Internal Auditing.
The opening of the Central American markets fulfilled
an objective outlined in a number of De Vega’s
public interventions, that MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
should have an operations base in every Latin
American country, so that some of these could serve
as “an advance party for the SISTEMA MAPFRE itself
in these markets.” This was the case in Peru, the
Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Venezuela.
All these efforts were fully rewarded when, on 21
January 1999, the SISTEMA MAPFRE “in acknowledgement of the significant work carried out by
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA”, made the company an
Operative Unit within the Sistema. With this acknowledgement the company came of age within the Sistema
and reinforced its commitment to becoming a
multinational within its sector.
Tribute to Manuel Ocón at the 6th MAPFRE Conference.
“This configuration of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA as one
of the Sistema’s main companies represents for all of
us a significant acknowledgement, not only of the
great progress MAPFRE has made in recent years, but
also of the management and work of all of us”, stated
Primitivo de Vega when he announced this news at
the Board Meeting of March 1999. At the 7th SIAM
congress he addressed the members of staff with the
following message: “I want you to see this distinction
which the Sistema has bestowed on us as exclusively
your merit”.
In 1999 a new opportunity opened up in the management team’s vision of diversification. Club VIDA,
the travel agency created in the heart of the Life Unit,
had not managed to take off and in this small travel
company De Vega saw a long-term project. MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA purchased the majority holding in the
company and changed its name to VIAJES MAPFRE,
aiming from the chairmanship to instil the principles
already introduced in MAPFRE ASISTENCIA.
Inauguration of COSTA RICA ASISTENCIA, on 27 November 1999.
(From left to right. Primitivo de Vega, Victor Ibañez-Martínez,
Ambassador of Spain in the country, Gerardo Hernandez de Lugo,
and Jeannette Orúe, ex-Manager of the SIAM company).
In just four years, De Vega and his team (which José
Luis Sánchez Báscones had recently joined as
Managing Director of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA Spain)
had fulfilled a dream which in 1994 had been almost
unimaginable. The good results achieved by the company after the change in strategy, despite some internal difficulty, had confirmed that the Unit was on the
right track and could continue to travel in the same
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 19
“The consolidation and growth of VIAJES MAPFRE forms part of our main objectives
for the next years… I am sure that within a few years it will hold a privileged place
amongst travel companies” (1999)
VIAJES MAPFRE, a dream come true
The Spanish tourism sector has lost one of its most
dynamic figures. Primitivo de Vega was an administrator with vision and an outlook to the future who,
knowing how to surround himself by a management
team familiar with the national and international
tourism sector, and a first-class strategic partner, the
Serhs Group, turned a small company, Club Vida, into
his dream: a profitable Tourism division which today
is composed of a wholesale and retail agency (VIAJES
MAPFRE), the online portal and
the tour operator Meliatour.
A reflexive and observant man, De Vega glimpsed in
the tourist industry a great opportunity to make the
diversification of the assistance business which he
longed for a reality. So, in 1999 the Unit acquired
Club Vida and began its entry into the vibrant tourist
sector. From that day this was one of his favourite projects, to which he devoted tremendous effort and his
personal involvement in the management.
With the change of name from Club Vida to VIAJES
MAPFRE, the company became totally linked to the
SISTEMA MAPFRE. For his new company De Vega
wanted to enjoy the support of the brand, not only
because of its national and international renown, but
also because he wanted to make VIAJES MAPFRE a
company with the same features: responsibility,
soundness and an excellent quality of service.
In his years as chairman of VIAJES MAPFRE, the
company went from 15 to over 60 offices throughout
Spain and, since last year, also in Latin America with
offices in Brazil, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic,
Chile and Argentina. It extended its business lines
and today VIAJES MAPFRE specializes in Congresses,
Conventions and Incentives (CC&I), Corporate,
Holiday and Receptive Travel. It also saw its excellent
service recognized with the awarding, in 2003, of the
Q for Quality in Tourism from the Spanish Institute for
Tourism Quality.
As an example, it can be mentioned that in 1999
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA closed the year with revenues
of around 157.90 million euros, which represented a
growth of 400 percent since the new Chairman joined
the company.
At the end of 1999, the US rating agency AM Best
awarded MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, for the first time in
pag 20 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
Members of the VIAJES MAPFRE Board of Directors.
Aware of the fact that the company’s growth was
based on alliances with excellent partners and the
most suitable acquisitions, in 2002, after a detailed
analysis of the Spanish market, VIAJES MAPFRE
acquired the retail business Viajes Tívoli, the agency
with the greatest presence in Aragon, and a 20 percent stake in Rhodasol-Turimar, the leading Spanish
tour operator. Then came other acquisitions such as
Sol Meliá’s tour operator Meliatour.
With the illusion and, at the same time, the demands
that De Vega instilled in his team, in 2004 the company began working to set up and launch, just one
year later, This was the Chairman’s
last great project with the travel agency, which thus
started out in the Network.
Primitivo de Vega managed to earn the respect of his
competitors and colleagues within the sector thanks
to dialogue, his knowledge of the market and his
negotiating skills. But he was also able to instil the
human team who formed part of the VIAJES MAPFRE
project with his illusion. His capacity to foresee the
future, his perseverance, enthusiasm and direct
involvement were the keys to making this long-distance runner’s dream come true.
its history, the A (excellent) rating for its financial
strength, quality management, strong capitalization
and global presence.
This was possibly one of the best years for MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA, since the company had achieved the
results established in its strategic plan as well as
national and international renown.
“The regional directorates are an
instrument for development, training, help and
control. They must generate a great commercial
drive which will improve sales and make
our companies grow” (2000)
Within this new context, the challenges which the
company had to face were, mainly, to grow in size and
for the growth to go hand in hand with results in a
strong currency, since, although in the American markets the results locally were extremely positive, their
value when they were consolidated in Spain was highly depleted. For this reason, in 2000 procedures were
undertaken with a view to enhancing MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA’s position in the United States and
expenses”. Whilst the quantitative objectives of this
were important, undoubtedly of greater importance
was the idea of always being alert to an objective
which was engraved on the minds of all the company’s executives, as “reduction of costs is the best tool
for competing”, as De Vega pointed out in many of his
Once the objective of introducing the company in
Latin America had been achieved, the next two years
were devoted mainly to consolidating the positions on
these markets and to seeking business opportunities
which would enable the company to gain volume.
Companies were also opened in Canada and Hungary
and projects in Poland and Italy were studied.
In spite of having achieved a diversification of business lines for MAPFRE ASISTENCIA and having
included VIAJES MAPFRE as a division of the company, De Vega did not cease to promote new opportunities outside the company’s usual activities.
“The addition of new companies is
a reflection of the dynamism and soundness
of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, which sets out on
a path of greater growth and consolidation
to add greater weight to the development
(SIAM NEWS, 2003)
Visit to the CARIBE BÁVARO Medical Centre, October 2003. From left to right
José Manuel Martínez, Cecilia Méndez, Francisco Ruiz Risueño, Primitivo
de Vega and Matías Salva.
At the same time, the volume of companies within
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA had now reached a figure of
34 and their management by Rafael Senén from central services in Madrid was increasingly complex. It is
within this context that five regional directorates were
created based in the United States, Mexico,
Colombia, Brazil and Madrid. This decision was the
beginning of a decentralized management which
would continue from then on. So, in 2004, the
Regional Directorate for Asia, the Middle East and
Africa was added. Today, those regional directors
(Nikos Antimissaris, Sergio Rivera and Daniel GarcíaVega) are a main part of the Units’ management
Right from the start, the Assistance Unit had stood
out for having created a conglomeration of local companies from scratch. While this had enabled the company to grow in an orderly manner, De Vega thought
that the volume achieved was not sufficient and that
other means for achieving the objectives established
in the strategic plan should be sought. In his opinion,
these objectives could only be covered by means of
the acquisition of companies which would provide
A permanent reminder at any start of the year with
Primitivo de Vega was to transmit the concern, at all
levels, for internal costs and the quarterly plans to
improve these. No-one can forget the memorandums
asking all the company’s teams for a “quarter with no
With Ramón Bago, Chairman of the Serhs tourism group.
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 21
“Our challenge is to grow, continuously,
in products and services for all the companies” (Conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil, 1998)
business volume in markets with a strong currency or
strategic business for all the SIAM companies. To find
companies which met these requirements was, from
that point, an enormous task, requiring many sacrifices at the start.
Rafael Senén was the main administrator of this policy and his personal effort, as well as that of a small
group of collaborators, achieved the objective
established by the Executive Chairman. After analyzing
some operations which it did not prove possible to
carry out, the management team finally decided on
the auto club ROAD AMERICA, a company which met
the requirements of volume and strategic location.
Situated in the United States, the acquisition of this
company marked a before and after in the Assistance
Unit’s recent history and therefore requires a separate
chapter. However, it should be mentioned that this
strategy which De Vega defined for the Unit has, in
the company’s last three years, become essential for
the start of a new era
The acquisition of ROAD AMERICA at the beginning
of 2003 was one of Primitivo de Vega’s greatest professional satisfactions at MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, and
also one of his most resounding successes, because it
fulfilled old desires, both of the company itself and of
the SISTEMA MAPFRE, while also achieving a number of objectives simultaneously.
De Vega had already explained on many occasions
how important it was that MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
should maintain high rates of growth in revenues and
reach a size that would give greater stability to the
achieving the size expected as well as fundamental
for the company’s profit and loss statement.
In 2003 the US auto club opened up the way for
another series of acquisitions (NUOVI SERVIZI AUTO
(NSA) in Italy, en 2004, and the British company
ABRAXAS, in 2005) in which more consideration was
given to the strategic factor than to merely financial
In these four years the results of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA had also increased considerably, going from 157
million euros at the close of 1999 to 260 million
euros in 2003.
If the year 2003 was marked by the purchase of
ROAD AMERICA, 2004 increased the company’s
sphere of performance even further with the creation
of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA ORO and the acquisition of
the Italian company NUOVI SERVIZI AUTO, which
business and to the company itself. He also defended the need to increase the Unit’s presence and
operations in countries with strong currencies such as
the United States or the European Union. Under
Rafael Senén’s leadership, a small group of executives set to work to find these companies.
With the acquisition of ROAD AMERICA, originally
called “Cadillac Project”, the Assistance Unit commenced a new strategy of growth and expansion of the
company through the purchase of companies and
businesses which, today, are still one of the main
lines of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA’s development.
This was an operation of over 18 million dollars in the
world’s leading power, the United States. A country
whose enormous size, idiosyncrasy, corporate culture
and financial and business strength make it particularly complex for foreign companies.
ROAD AMERICA also represented one of the greatest
corporate challenges for the Unit, which from the
start enjoyed the support of the Sistema’s Chairman
and top management who placed their faith in
Primitivo de Vega and his management team.
15 January 2003, Dennis Fantis and Albert Hutchinson, Managing
Director and founder of ROAD AMERICA, respectively, with Primitivo de
Vega and Rafael Senén.
pag 22 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
The purchase of ROAD AMERICA also gave MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA an extensive provider network in the 52
states, enabling it to offer services throughout the
country, coast to coast. All this gave that the project
great strategic value, making it especially attractive.
a commitment to the elderly
After a number of years of research and analysis,
in 2003 one of the SISTEMA MAPFRE’s great
challenges became a reality. This was setting up a
MAPFRE company specializing in the management of
resources and provision of socio-sanitary services for
the elderly and dependent persons, called MAPFRE
Aware of the importance this segment of the population would have in coming years for modern society
and therefore for the SISTEMA MAPFRE, Primitivo de
Vega involved himself totally in setting up this project, which in July 2003 saw the light after the foundations had been laid in 1996, with the marketing of
Teleassistance and, in 1999, with the acquisition of
10% of the Spanish company Quavitae, a specialist
in this business.
participated first hand in all
the management aspects,
from designing the sales
teams to planning the new
residences. And he did all
this with the enthusiasm of
one who knows that the
project underway will reap
great success and joy for
“It is my wish”, he said at the company’s last Board
Meeting, that we should work “with a clear will to
improve, to grow and to become the reference company for the elderly in Spain”.
That business adventure commenced by Primitivo de
Vega is today a leading company in its business sector. It has over 4,400 places distributed, amongst
other, in 20 residences and 25 day centres, and
focuses, above all, on providing the best quality and
most caring attention for the elderly.
As Chairman of the new company, which started out
with a capital of 17 million euros, Primitivo de Vega
would provide the basis for the development of
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA within the sphere of Pecuniary
Loss Insurance, also providing the SISTEMA MAPFRE
with a commercial network of over 2,000 sales points
throughout Europe.
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA ORO was a project matured
over a long period of time by De Vega since the launch
of Teleassistance in 1996. The entry into the sector
of residential centres and the home assistance service, created the third of the strategic divisions upon
which MAPFRE ASISTENCIA would consolidate in
the following years: Assistance, Travel and The
From this point, Asistencia would have a line of products which would enable it to develop B2C with the
best margins and not depend exclusively on B2B contracts, in which the loss of one contract could affect
a year’s results.
The acquisition of NSA was considerably more simple
than that of ROAD AMERICA, and an anecdote of this
operation was the photo of the signing of the agreement in which electronic retouching enabled all the
signatories to appear wearing a tie, in spite of the fact
that one of them had not been wearing one.
is set to be one of the most important within
SIAM’s strategy of growth and expansion”
(XII SIAM Convention, 2005)
For many years, Primitivo de Vega had informed on
the possibilities which the Chinese market would
offer in the medium and short term, as this economy
represents 13% of the world’s Gross Domestic
(continued on page 25)
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 23
Agreement with the tourism company China International Travel Services, in April 2004.
Setting up the SISTEMA MAPFRE in China
Primitivo de Vega was always well aware of how highly
the SISTEMA MAPFRE valued the Assistance Unit’s
role as a spearhead for MAPFRE’s international introduction.
He also always stated his great pride in the fact that
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA was able to face the challenge
of globalization, and that it had the resources and,
above all, the enthusiasm, drive and flexibility
required to face business projects anywhere in the
When China joined the World Trade Organization in
October 2001 this marked a turning point, opening
up the country to foreign investment, which was a call
to large business groups from many countries. In
2002 and 2003 Primitivo de Vega requested the first
explorations to be carried out and obtained the first
reports on the Chinese insurance and assistance
During this time, MAPFRE ASISTENCIA carried out
analysis which enabled it to find out more about the
insurance and reinsurance market in China, its travel
assistance business and to make contact with some
of the country’s leading insurance and reinsurance
China represented an especially difficult challenge for
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA because of its size, the
pag 24 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
tremendous cultural difference, the greatly different
way of doing business and the interventionism of
local, provincial and state authorities.
In order to set up in China it is essential, amongst
other requirements, to have someone who knows the
ways of doing business in the West and the East.
Primitivo de Vega also played a significant role in this,
since as a “universal Asturian” he had a cordial relationship with the Cosmen family, who at the time
owned ALSA, one of the Spanish companies established in China for the longest time. The contacts with
ALSA, with the Spanish embassy, the consulates in
Beijing and Shanghai and with top European Union
officials in the country helped the company to get to
know in situ the particular features of the Chinese
All this work resulted in the creation of ROAD CHINA
ASSISTANCE in Beijing, the setting up of a branch of
this company in Shanghai and the opening of the
MAPFRE MUTUALIDAD Representative Office in
Beijing, which will enable the SISTEMA MAPFRE to
set up as an insurer in the whole of the country in less
than two years. Once again, Primitivo de Vega managed to fulfil in record time the task set him by the
SISTEMA MAPFRE just one year previously, introducing
MAPFRE in a country as complex as China.
This project, which had always been on the horizon,
became a reality at the end of 2004. After months of
hectic activity and trips to Beijing with Rafael Senén,
the Chairman of MAPFRE ASISTENCIA finalized the
actions for setting up an assistance company which
In April last year, and in the presence of the Chairman
of the SISTEMA MAPFRE, José Manuel Martínez, the
inauguration was held of the offices of ROAD CHINA
ASSISTANCE, situated in the heart of the financial
district of China’s capital city.
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA, which had opened up to the
Asian markets with the creation of a company in the
Philippines, made a giant leap by making a commitment to China as an option for future growth in the
area. This decision met with great satisfaction from
all the employees, who saw in this act clear evidence
of the company’s strength for taking on this task.
Despite the strategic importance of this new company, the Old Continent, in De Vega’s opinion, should
offer more opportunities for growth. In line with this
principle, in July 2005 the company signed the
acquisition of ABRAXAS, a leading company in a market as difficult and important as the British market
and with a product, GAP, perfectly exportable to other
countries and which also provided a network for direct
marketing of B2C programmes.
China, the acquisition of ABRAXAS in the United
Kingdom and the commencement of analysis of
opportunities in India.
In his opening speech at the annual convention of
SIAM’s general managers in China, De Vega had outlined some ideas regarding the coming years and had
left one phrase in the minds of all: “a stone which
moves swiftly over the water’s surface never sinks”.
This partly summed up his permanent desire to have
a company in continual movement. This had enabled
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA to grow and consolidate.
In just 12 years, 28 new companies had been created,
eight insurance branches had started to operate,
three main divisions had been organized and a model
of management had been firmly linked to the name of
MAPFRE ASISTENCIA. All this was the work of many
people who work and have worked at MAPFRE ASISTENCIA. However, all those who have lived through
this adventure are aware of the legacy which Primitivo
de Vega has left.
An ever-present principle in MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
has been that consolidation means running less fast,
but to never stop running. And although at the start
of 2005 De Vega had requested almost total concentration on consolidation, the company moved towards
this with firm realities such as the introduction in
“But this is just the start:
we continue thinking, growing, innovating and,
above all, committed to making life easier and
more comfortable every day for people.
Thanks to this, we will gain prestige and
respect amongst our competitors worldwide”
(SIAM NEWS, 1999)
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 25
MAPFRE has lost a great executive
whose extraordinary work speaks for
itself of his professional category.
The people who work in MAPFRE ASISTENCIA
have lost a great boss and we have
all lost a good man, a great companion
and an exceptional friend.
Alberto Manzano
Deputy Chairman SISTEMA MAPFRE
The moments I was lucky enough to share with my good friend
Primitivo will always live on with me in my memory. The company has lost a great professional, a real gentleman, calm and
respectful, who created friendship and affection with all those
who were lucky enough to know him.
Ramon Bagó Agulló
Chairman, Grupo Serhs
His intellectual and personal heritage
will remain with us
Primitivo’s sad departure is not
only the loss of the father
But also as a friend and close
colleague to me and especially
for the Business Unit in Ireland.
His disappearance leaves a tremendous emptiness
for those of us we were lucky enough to share his
professional ideals. I will remember his conviction that
one should live more in harmony with one’s opinions, his
desire for the globalization of assistance, his continual
concern to provide an excellent service and his human
warmth. Farewell to a great man, a great boss ¡and a great
“May he rest in the right hand
of God”.
Noel Quirke
Managing Director United
Kingdom and Ireland Business Unit
Sergio Rivera
Regional Director, Latin America
To work with him was a great honour
and a great learning experience. He
never ceased to surprise me with his
incredible memory, his quick-thinking
and his sense of commitment to the
company. All the team at will miss him.
Marina Clarimón
pag 26 / SIAM NEWS - March 2006
We have lost a great professional
I will keep Primitivo in my heart as an open
minded Chairman with a sixth sense for
developments in new markets, and as a
loyal allied in our joint challenges.
Edgard Van de Velde
Directeur Non Life Fortis Bank Insurance
I am sure we would all
have wished that his
farewell from MAPFRE
ASISTENCIA could have
been to enjoy a welldeserved retirement
with his family after so
many years of work.
Marisa Gómez Uría
Treasury Director
A great person, hardworking
and a born fighter, he opened
up the way with his
imagination and adventurous
spirit, always seeking
quality and results as a
distinctive feature.
Primitivo was a
good-natured, pleasant,
extremely approachable
person, always with a smile
on his face. For all these
reasons we miss him greatly
and the empty space left
by him represents an
irreparable loss.
Only time will help to
heal the wound.
I enjoyed knowing Primitivo very
much and have learned a lot from
this great professional, who has
great success. I hope his successors will follow in his footsteps
towards future successes.
Khalid Savod Al Hassan
Managing Director & CEO
Gulf Insurance Company (Kuwait)
Andrés Jiménez
Chairman MAPFRE RE
For those of us who had the honour and pleasure of
working with him at MAPFRE QUAVITAE, his memory
already forms part of our history. It is impossible to
forget his illusion and drive in this project.
We will miss him, something that only good friends and
good people achieve.
Ángel Córdoba
CEO SPPE of Corporación Caja Madrid
We shall miss his
experience, friendship
and advice
He is one of the few people I have known in my life who, with his great
wisdom, can summarize the company in four words: industriousness,
honesty and common sense. A corporate culture which brought me
to MAPFRE ASISTENCIA and which I have seen and felt for myself
incarnated in Mr. De Vega.
Ma Chi
SIAM NEWS - March 2006 / pag 27

Similar documents

Edition 25

Edition 25 will increase and it will play a central role in SISTEMA MAPFRE, guaranteeing its institutional principles and independence. In his speech at the MAPFRE MUTUALIDAD Shareholders Meeting on 15 June, ...

More information

MAPFRE ASISTENCIA An entrepreneurial spirit

MAPFRE ASISTENCIA An entrepreneurial spirit Warranty Extension for new vehicles completes MAPFRE ASISTENCIA’s range of Specialty Risk programmes for the motor sector for distribution by dealers, joining the current GAP, Mechanical Breakdown ...

More information