(Adds details from AIG memo, context and Marsh statement)
By Suzanne Barlyn
July 5 (Reuters) - American International Group Inc said on Wednesday that it has named the head of Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc’s brokerage business to work alongside the insurance giant’s new chief executive, Brian Duperreault, as chief operating officer.
Peter Zaffino, who has served a dual role as chief executive officer at Marsh LLC and head of risk and insurance services for Marsh & McLennan Companies, will lead AIG’s daily operations in all countries, including Japan and Europe, as well as U.S. commercial field operations, AIG said.
AIG, the largest U.S. underwriter of commercial property and casualty policies, named Duperreault as CEO in May, selecting a protégé of former CEO Hank Greenberg and an industry veteran known for his turnaround expertise.
Duperreault, 70, replaced Peter Hancock, who said in March that he planned to step down after poor financial performance frustrated shareholders and the insurer’s board of directors.
Zaffino will also work alongside Duperreault to develop the insurer’s long-term strategy, Duperreault said in a memo to employees on Wednesday.
Zaffino, who will replace AIG’s present COO, Jeff Hurd, will begin the position on Aug. 1, after which “there will be some changes to our operating structure and reporting lines,” Duperreault said in the memo.
AIG’s U.S. life and retirement businesses will continue to report to Kevin Hogan, chief executive of AIG’s consumer business. Zaffino will “work closely” with Hogan and the chief executive of AIG’s commercial unit, Rob Schimek, according to the memo.
The move will put “equal focus and leadership” on field operations, led by Zaffino, with “critical areas” of underwriting and risk strategies led by Hogan and Schimek, Duperreault said in the memo.
AIG, which has been the target of activist investors led by billionaire Carl Icahn, reported a better-than-expected first-quarter operating profit in May, helped by investment returns and cost cuts.
Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc on Wednesday named Marsh LLC President John Doyle to replace Zaffino as its brokerage unit’s chief executive, it said. The role of chairman of risk and insurance services will not be filled, the company said.
Reporting by Suzanne Barlyn; Editing by Dan Grebler