Management at insurance company Safeco Corp. announced that CFO Rod Pierson is retiring effective December 31. Pierson has been with the Seattle-based company for more than 27 years. “I’ve enjoyed my time here at Safeco tremendously,” said Pierson. “I really feel like the company’s headed in the right direction now as a result of tough decisions by management.”
According to a company statement, Safeco has retained recruitment firm Russell Reynolds Associates to help find a replacement for Pierson. The new CFO will have to deal with the aftermath of the September 11 terror attacks. Shortly after the attacks in New York and Washington, D.C., the company announced that its primary insurance lines would incur estimated losses of $25 million (net of reinsurance) due to the attacks. In addition, Safeco management continues to review the exposure of its Lloyd’s of London operations, and estimates the insurer will lose an additional $5 million to $10 million as a result of that exposure.
Total losses stemming from the terrorist attacks will likely reduce Safeco’s third-quarter income by between $0.15 and $0.18 per diluted share on an after-tax basis.