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B.A.T Industries P.L.C. has said that it and other tobacco companies are willing to listen to "any sensible proposals" for an industrywide settlement of U.S. legal actions brought against them on behalf of smokers. In a reversal of the group's previous insistence that it would not settle, B.A.T Chief Executive Martin Broughton said he and the U.S. tobacco industry would consider proposals from plaintiffs lawyers and state attorneys general. . . .Bermuda-ba sed Sphere Drake Holdings Ltd. reported 1996 net income of $26.5 million, sharply up from a $17.9 million net loss the company reported in 1995. Sphere Drake attributed the turnaround to an ongoing strategic restructuring to concen trate on lines offering a better return, even though this resulted in $8.6 million in restructuring costs last year and $14.2 million of losses from discontinued marine insurance operations. . . .Alexis Russet has been appointed ch airman of Sorema, the reinsurance affiliate of Paris-based Groupama, and chief executive officer of Sorema International, the reinsurance holding company. Mr. Russet currently serves as chairman and chief executive officer of Franc e's state-owned reinsurer, Caisse Centrale de Reassurance. Groupama also has reorganized the management of its reinsurance arm, with Sorema International owning 100% of Sorema, which in turn will own 100% of Sorema (UK) and 90% of Sorema North America. . . .London-based broker JIB Group P.L.C. reported a 29% rise in its 1996 pretax profits to (British pounds) 27.5 million ($44.4 million) on operating revenue, mainly from insurance and reinsurance brokering, which was up 10% at (British pounds) 198.4 million ($320.3 million). . . .Insurer Terra Nova (Bermuda) Holdings Ltd. reported 1996 net income up 41.7% to $64.9 million on gross premiums written, which were 19.3% higher at $361 million. Aftertax operating income r ose 45.5% to $57.2 million. The improvement reflected expanding business and the added capital resources developed over the year. . . .Specialist London-based casualty insurer Unionamerica Insurance Co. Ltd., which underwrites 86% of its business in the United States, achieved a 38% improvement in 1996 pretax profit to $32.5 million. While the insurer's gross written premium volume slipped 7.3% to $145.9 million, this was partly attributed to attrition in mo re competitive property business. . . .An Australian employment practices liability insurance policy has been designed by Brisbane-based Specialist Underwriting Agencies Pty. Ltd. and is underwritten by Sydney-based Lumley General Insurance Ltd. The EPL policy covers claims arising from employees, former employees and job applicants' allegations of sexual or racial discrimination, wrongful termination or wrongful refusal to employ, wrongful failure to promot e, defamation and invasion of privacy. Employment practices liability coverage currently is not widely available in Australia.