Andrew Moss, the CEO for Aviva, Britain’s largest insurer, has resigned suddenly, following a shareholder revolt over executive pay and compensation.
The company gave no further explanation as to why the decision was made by Moss, who was first promoted to CEO in 2007. The decision comes just one week after shareholders voted against the companies suggestions for executive pay and bonuses.
Barrie Cornes, analyst at Panmure Gordon & Co, suggested that:
“We suspect that the latest batch of negative headlines over the Remuneration Report at the AGM was the last straw and Moss had to go. Few will shed any tears given his handling of the business over the last few years which have seen the shares massively underperform the sector.”
In a statement by the company, Aviva announced that John McFarlane, its chairman-designate, will step in as interim CEO, and “will immediately assume the task of improving the delivery of shareholder value by the group.” They went on to say that:
“He does not underestimate the significance of the challenge but is optimistic of the right result.”
Following the appointment, interim-CEO McFarlane stated that:
“My first priorities are to regain the respect of our shareholders by eliminating the discount in our share price and to find internally or externally the very best leader to be our future CEO. I will meet all of the major investors over the coming days and weeks.”
Andrew Moss is not the first CEO to resign in recent weeks, as David Brennan recently announced his resignation as CEO of popular drug maker AstraZeneca. Also, Sly Bailey has decided to leave newspaper publisher Trinity Mirror at the end of 2012. Both companies have disappointed shareholders with declining stock prices, much like Aviva.
Check out more information about another Aviva shake-up here: