Prudential U.K. Chairman Hurn Resigns

April 25, 2002

Sir Roger Hurn abruptly announced that he would step down as Chairman of the U.K.’s Prudential, amid controversy over his leadership of Marconi, the troubled U.K. telecommunications company, which he headed until last September before moving to the Pru.

The controversy over Hurn’s position at the Pru is a result of the severe losses suffered by Marconi under his tenure and the delay in announcing the bad news. The U.K.’s Financial Services Authority, which regulates, banks, insurers and other financial institutions is expected to deliver a report soon of its investigation into the Marconi meltdown. The company owes more than £ 3 billion ($4.35 billion), its shares have tumbled in value, and it’s reportedly in serious financial difficulties, and could collapse if it loses the support of its banks.

According to a report in London’s Financial Times, Hurn resigned in order to assure that Prudential wouldn’t be affected by any criticism aimed at him. “I am concerned that the company [Prudential] should not be adversely affected in any way by my recent involvement with Marconi,” he reportedly stated.

No successor has been selected to replace Hurn, who will remain on the Pru’s board at least until the annual shareholders meeting scheduled for May 9.

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