Financial Forensics Blog

Risk Mitigation and Financial Forensics: The Story of Lowers Forensics International
August 20, 2019

Risk Mitigation and Financial Forensics: The Story of Lowers Forensics International

Q&A with Lowers Risk Group CEO, Mark Lowers, and Lowers Forensics International President of U.S. Operations, Marc Johnson

We recently celebrated the first anniversary of the formation of Lowers Forensics International, the  financial forensics division of Lowers Risk Group. The new division was the brainchild of Mark Lowers, CEO of Lowers Risk Group, and Marc Johnson, now President of Lowers Forensics International. We sat down with Mark and Marc to learn more about the background of the organization and how the intersection of risk mitigation and forensics is serving the needs of our shared clients.

Q. What inspired the formation of the financial forensics division within Lowers Risk Group?

A. Mark Lowers:
The forensics division was an idea Marc and I had been tossing around for a while. When we finally sat down for a detailed conversation, it really resonated, and we decided to act. We’ve seen the industries we’re working with reinventing themselves and we knew we had to stay ahead of the game. We saw this as an opportunity to do just that and better serve our shared clients.

I think about the work we do with insureds and insurance companies and in both cases, there is a significant amount of transformation that lends itself to a closer connection between risk mitigation, claims management, and financial forensics. Particularly, in the insurance world, there is consolidation and a shrinking premium pool that has placed a tremendous focus on cost control at the insurance level and efficiencies around claims handling and risk assessment. Having a forensic unit provides another arrow in our quiver; it completes the loop. It gives us a significant leg up on our competitors and gives our insurance company clients the efficiencies they are looking for.

A. Marc Johnson:
I spent my formative years, which has morphed into 30 years on the forensic accounting side, where you see firms doing one thing: Kill the beast, eat it, to generate maximum dollars and returns. While the market has drastically changed, resulting in a keen eye towards cost containment, this stale approach to servicing our clients is a certain path to financial ruin. This is evidenced by the flurry of current consolidation activity we see with vendors servicing the insurance claims market. I saw this as an opportunity to work with a clean plate (a play on kill and eat the beast) and run an organization of fresh thinkers with a willingness to bring new exciting offerings to the market. Lowers Risk Group was the right fit.

Q. How will you leverage technology to address the needs of insurance companies?

A. Mark Lowers:
We have seen a lot of movement toward fixed fees in terms of claims adjusting. This is something we are well positioned to address through our technology platforms. We already have the resources to bring technology to the forefront and leverage that technology to make the process more efficient and transparent. We are using technology to disrupt that static model of accounting firms and adjusters and will continue to build on this. As evidence we have introduced StratisTM to the market; our automated Business Interruption platform, which produces an executive report, with supporting schedules at a fixed fee.

Q. What has been your approach to staffing the forensics division?

A. Mark Lowers:
We’ve taken the approach within Lowers Forensics International to bring in thought leaders and subject matter experts within the industries and marketplaces we serve. As such, it was no accident we opened offices in Albany, Providence, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Puerto Rico, London, Mexico City,  Argentina, and so on (see all current locations here). We are identifying the key clients and the key thought leaders and building our team accordingly.

Q: How will the forensics group collaborate with the risk team to handle claims?

A. Marc Johnson:
Thinking about the typical lifecycle of a claim, it starts in house with the insurance company, then gets assigned to an internal or external adjuster, then the forensics accounting group is retained. Now, if assigned to the Lowers Risk team we can get involved earlier to streamline the process with services covering claims investigations, adjusting, asset recovery, and forensics.  The benefit to both the insurance companies and the insureds is that we can move through a claim more quickly because we are a cohesive unit, resulting in a quicker claims settlement.

Q: What else is in store for Lowers Risk Group and Lowers Forensics International?

A. Mark Lowers:
A lot of the work we do is at the hands of law firms, so I see us getting more involved with the legal community, including civil matters related to losses, business valuation, etc. The legal community is also looking for new markets, new services, some of their traditional work is shrinking so this is a great opportunity for us to bring our technology and disruptive approach to help solve their problems.

A. Marc Johnson:
With Stratis™ we will be able to offer a cost-effective solution to their accounting needs in a way that hasn’t been seen before. We are excited to celebrate our 1st year with a fund raiser to benefit Hero Homes at Caroline’s Comedy Club on Tuesday, September 17th, and venture on to our second year continuing to bring new and exciting cost-effective offerings to the market.

Learn more about Lowers Risk Group at lowersriskgroup.com and stay tuned here for other upcoming Q&As with members of the Lowers Forensics International team.