AIG’s Benmosche to speak in Bermuda
American International Group chief executive officer Robert Benmosche will be the guest speaker at the Bermuda Captive Conference in June,
The Royal Gazette has learned.
The larger-than-life character took over the reins at AIG in August 2009, less than a year after the New York-based insurer was saved from collapse by the US Government in a bailout that stretched to more than $180 billion in loan facilities and guarantees.
Mr Benmosche has since overseen efforts to pay back the bailout money by selling off assets and has continued doing his high-profile job while undergoing treatment for cancer, which was diagnosed last year.
Bermuda Captive Conference (BCC) organising committee chairwoman Jill Husbands said in an interview yesterday: “We're honoured to have attracted such a prestigious speaker to the conference.”
She added that a fellow committee member had reached out to Mr Benmosche, who had agreed to speak at the conference, which will take place from June 5 to 8 this year at the Fairmont Southampton.
The AIG office in Bermuda, which employs around 200 people, had also been “instrumental” in bringing the well-known CEO to the Island, Ms Husbands added. AIG has had a presence in Bermuda for more than four decades.
Before agreeing to come out of retirement to take over at AIG, Mr Benmosche was chairman and CEO of MetLife between 1998 and 2006.
Mr Benmosche is widely judged to have boosted morale among an AIG workforce that was demoralised when he came in.
His cancer treatment started in October last year and in late January AIG said the CEO had responded well to the chemotherapy.
The conference is one of the biggest insurance events on the Bermuda calendar and last year attracted around 400 people from around the world.
Corporations set up captive insurers to provide a form of self-insurance and many captives write third-party business too. Bermuda is the world's leading captive domicile, with nearly 900 active captives.
New incorporations have slowed to a trickle in the past two years, since the 2008 financial crisis. However, Ms Husbands, who is head of office at Marsh IAS Management Services (Bermuda), sees some grounds for optimism for the future.
“I don't want to get overly excited, but I would say we are seeing more general inquiries this year than we have seen in the past two years,” Ms Husbands said.
“Perhaps some companies held off on proceeding with a captive because of the uncertain economic situation. Now they are looking again.
“It's not yet turned into formations, but there are more general inquiries.”