AIG CEO Peter Hancock to Resign, Icahn Cheers Move

Markets Reuters

American International Group Inc said Chief Executive Peter Hancock has informed the board that he plans to resign, more than a year after billionaire investor Carl Icahn called for a breakup of the company.

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Hancock will remain CEO until a successor has been named, the company said.

The Wall Street Journal reported last month that the company's board was discussing whether to penalize or oust Hancock over a major setback in the insurer's turnaround plan.

Tensions between Hancock and Icahn began to mount after the CEO rebuffed the activist investor's proposals. Icahn has also threatened a proxy fight at AIG.

"We fully support the actions taken today by the board of AIG," Icahn tweeted on Thursday.

Icahn has argued that a split would help AIG rid itself of the regulatory burden of being a systemically important financial institution, which requires higher capital cushions.

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"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 said in a statement.

Hancock was named president and chief executive officer in September 2014.

AIG's shares rose 2.4 percent in premarket trading. (Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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