Zurich CEO Martin Senn resigns as loss reported

Martin Senn resigns after Switzerland’s largest insurer reported a loss and abandons RSA bid

Zurich Insurance Group chief executive Martin Senn resigned after Switzerland's largest insurer reported a loss at its general insurance unit and abandoned a takeover bid for Britain's RSA Insurance Group.

Chairman Tom de Swaan has been appointed interim CEO with immediate effect, the Zurich-based company said in a statement Tuesday. The resignation will have no effect on the insurer’s strategy or financial targets, with the company “confident” about achieving its targets set for the three years through 2016, it said.

Zurich earlier this month announced plans to cut jobs and exit some businesses in a reorganisation of its global general insurance unit after the non-life business reported a third- quarter loss. The insurer abandoned its proposed bid for RSA in September after underestimating North American auto and construction liabilities. “There have been some setbacks in recent months, but I am convinced that we have put in place the right measures for Zurich to reach its targets,” Senn said in the statement. “I will remain closely tied to the company. vice chairman Fred Kindle will take on “certain additional responsibilities” as part of the management changes, according to the statement. The company said it plans to provide information on the use of $3 billion in excess capital when it publishes full-year results.

Zurich shares have dropped about 13 per cent this year.