Risk Management

CEO Resigns, CFO to Leave RenaissanceRe

The SEC is continuing its investigation into the company's restatement, which corrected its accounting for purchases of reinsurance.
Stephen TaubNovember 2, 2005

RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. announced that chairman and chief executive officer James Stanard has resigned. Neill A. Currie was named CEO and W. James MacGinnitie, non-executive chairman.

The insurance company added that chief operating officer and chief financial officer John M. Lummis plans to retire when his contract expires on June 30, 2006, and that Marty Merritt, who served as controller until this past April, has left the company.

The company gave no specifics on the departures. As CFO.com reported in July, however, Stanard and former senior vice president of specialty reinsurance Michael Cash each received a Wells notice from the Securities and Exchange Commission, indicating that the regulator could bring a civil enforcement action against them for possible securities laws violations.

The notices were issued in connection with the SEC’s ongoing investigation into the company’s restatement. The commission also is investigating reinsurers regarding so-called finite insurance, which can be used to artificially inflate a company’s financial results. In February, RenaissanceRe announced that it would restate results from 2001 to 2003 to correct how it accounted for reinsurance it had purchased from companies including Inter-Ocean Holdings Ltd., which specialized in finite insurance.

“The board has been monitoring this situation very closely and has concluded that at this point it is best for our company, our people and our shareholders to begin to put this matter behind us,” said MacGinnitie, the newly appointed chairman, in a statement.

MacGinnitie has served on the board of directors since February 2000 and is an independent actuary and consultant. He also served as senior vice president and chief financial officer of CNA Financial from September 1997 to September 1999.

Currie, now the CEO, co-founded RenaissanceRe in 1993 and served as a senior vice president through 1997. He rejoined the company in July as executive vice president, responsible for marketing and client relations, and subsequently assumed responsibility for the company’s specialty reinsurance business.