RenaissanceRe Non-Committal About Shareholder’s Call to Consider Possible Sale

By | October 3, 2018

TimesSquare Capital Management, an institutional management firm and RenaissanceRe investor since 2008, wrote RenaissanceRe CEO Kevin O’Donnell on Sept. 7 with their pitch to explore other strategic options. They argued the company’s position as a standalone reinsurer hasn’t led to any value creation for shareholders, due in large part to dampening prices.

Noting the increasing consolidation of the industry, the TimesSquare letter asked the RenaissanceRe board to consider strategic alternatives, including a possible sale, in order to boost shareholder value. Ian Anthony Rosenthal, TimesSquare senior founding partner and portfolio manager, and Seth Bienstock, partner and director, signed the letter.

On Oct. 2, ReinassanceRe responded to the letter with a public statement welcoming “open and constructive communications with all shareholders.” The Bermuda-based company noted it has met with TimesSquare management in recent years, and that its CEO and chairman separately met with TimesSquare within the last few months. The company was non-committal, however, regarding the idea of exploring a possible sale.

“We have considered fully TimesSquare’s views and have shared them with our board. Our board understands, and is committed to, its fiduciary duties to act in the best interests of all shareholders,” RenaissanceRe said in its statement. “Our board and management team continuously focus on enhancing shareholder value through execution of the company’s strategic plan. We will maintain an open and active dialogue with all of our shareholders as we continue to work to enhance shareholder value.”

TimesSquare’s Rosenthal and Bienstock responded with a public letter, also on Oct. 2, expressing hope that O’Donnell had “given serious consideration” to their push for a RenaissanceRe sale.

TimesSquare also released its initial Sept. 7 letter “in order to outline our views for shareholders and ensure that our thoughts on maximizing shareholder value are as explicit as possible.” The firm was cordial, and urged further conversation on the matter.

Sources: RenaissanceRe, TimesSquare

This article was originally published in Wells Media Group’s Carrier Management, the magazine for property/casualty insurance carrier executives.

About Mark Hollmer

Hollmer is a veteran business journalist and editor of CarrierManagement.com's daily e-newsletter for the property/casualty insurance industry C-suite. He may be reached at mhollmer@carriermanagement.com. More from Mark Hollmer

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