Allmerica Financial Corporation announced that it has named Frederick Eppinger, 44, President, Chief Executive Officer and Director, effective September 8. He will succeed John O’Brien, who resigned in the fall of 2002, as the decline in the equity markets hit the company’s profits.
Eppinger is currently Executive VP of property and casualty field and service operations for The Hartford, with responsibility for approximately 6,000 employees. He joined The Hartford in 2001, as Senior VP for Strategic Marketing, and has more than 20 years experience in the insurance and financial services businesses.
The announcement noted that as a partner in the financial institutions group at McKinsey & Company, he “provided consulting services to insurance and financial services companies for more than 15 years before joining The Hartford,” working closely “with leading insurance companies focusing on critical strategy, operational and organizational issues in both the property and casualty and financial services businesses.” From 2000 to 2001, Eppinger was Executive VP of Marketing and Service Operations for ChannelPoint, Inc., a company that specialized in business-to-business technology for insurance and financial services companies.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome Fred to Allmerica,” stated Michael P. Angelini, Chairman of the Board of Directors. “He brings versatility of knowledge and experience in both the financial services and property and casualty insurance businesses. Fred will be an effective leader for Allmerica as we strengthen our regional franchises with The Hanover and Citizens insurance companies and maximize the value of our life insurance, investment management and broker-dealer businesses. He adds another dimension to our company.”
Eppinger commented, “I am pleased to have this opportunity to lead Allmerica to a successful future, and I appreciate the confidence the company’s Board of Directors has in me. My focus will be to position Allmerica for increased profitability and growth, so we can continue to serve the interests of all of our stakeholders.”
Following O’Brien’s departure, the company’s operations have been managed by Allmerica’s Office of the Chairman, comprised of Angelini, J. Kendall Huber, Senior VP and General Counsel, Edward J. Parry, III, President of Allmerica Asset Accumulation and Allmerica Financial Corporation’s CFO and Robert P. Restrepo, Jr., President of Allmerica Property and Casualty.”
Angelini praised the efforts of the interim team, stating, “Jay Huber, Ed Parry and Bob Restrepo have done an outstanding job of seeing Allmerica through a very difficult period, directing a successful restructuring effort and positioning us for a great future. “They have played a key role in strengthening our focus on the company’s property and casualty operations, converting its agent distribution network into an independent broker-dealer and undertaking a number of capital improvement efforts.”
The company said that earlier this year it had “completed a series of transactions that significantly improved the capital and surplus positions of its life insurance companies.” Angelini noted that “We’ve accomplished a great deal over the last nine months. I’m confident of our success under Fred’s leadership and with the continuing support of our many dedicated and talented employees.”
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