Fear of undermining progress prompts decision as AIG chief exits

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AIG chief executive Peter Hancock has resigned amid speculation that he would be forced out of the troubled company.

Hancock said that a lack of shareholder support had triggered his decision.

He said: “Without wholehearted shareholder support for my continued leadership, a protracted period of uncertainty could undermine the progress we have made and damage the interests of our policyholders, employees, regulators, debtholders, and shareholders.”

Hancock will remain at the company until a successor has been found. AIG said its board would conduct a “comprehensive” search for Hancock’s replacement.

The AIG chief exits following speculation that Hancock would be forced out of the company because his turnaround plan was taking longer than thought.

AIG made a huge $3bn (£2.5bn) loss in the fourth quarter 2016, pushing the troubled insurer into an $849m loss for the full year.

Despite this, AIG chairman Douglas Steenland praised Hancock’s contribution since he took over as chief executive in September 2014.

Steenland said: “Peter’s accomplishments at AIG, including his role in the company’s turnaround and in driving shareholder value, are immeasurable. He tackled the company’s most complex issues, including the repayment of AIG’s obligations to the US Treasury in full and with a profit, and is leaving AIG as a strong, focused and profitable insurance company.

“The board thanks Peter for his many contributions.”