Hartford Financial has reportedly been stumbling in its quest to find a new chief executive. Current CEO Ramani Ayer has announced he will step down from the post at the end of the year. Hartford has reportedly approached Kip Condron and Bob Kelly, two well-known insurance executives. Both reportedly were not interested in running the company, which took $3.4 billion in TARP funds yesterday.
Now we’re told that Hartford’s attempts to recruit from outside the insurance sector box have failed as well. A person familiar with the matter says the company has spoken to Morgan Stanley co-president James Gorman and former Merrill Lynch executive Bob McCann. Both have reportedly declined.
The series of declines has some wondering whether there might be more serious problems inside of Hartford. Merrill Lynch, for instance, reportedly had a hard time recruiting a CEO, in part because of doubts by Wall Street executives about it’s financial health. John Thain nabbed the position while others hesitated. The company’s willingness to look so far outside the insurance sector has also been raising eyebrows.
The newest crop of possible recruits are said by a person familiar with the matter to come from inside the insurance sector. We’re told that the company has talked to or is considering Steven Candarian, the CIO of MetLife, David Foy, who was CEO of Hartford Life, and J. Benet, the CFO of travellers.
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