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St Paul Travelers plans board cull

Nine months into its merged existence, US insurer The St Paul Travelers revealed last week (16 December) that it plans to slash the size of its board from 23 to a proposed 13 members.

The company inherited a mammoth board as a result of the supermerger of St Paul and Travelers, successfully completed on 1 April this year.

At the time, the company announced that it would keep on all 11 members of the St Paul board, along with the entire Travelers’ contingent.

The merger brought together $107bn of total assets, $20bn of shareholders’ equity, $26bn in capital, and net written premiums of $20bn, creating a US commercial lines insurer second only to AIG in size.

St Paul chief Jay Fishman, himself a former Travelers man, became chief executive of the combine, while former Travelers boss Robert Lipp took the chairman’s post at the new company.

In last week’s statement, the company explained that the proposed reduction had been unanimously approved by the board under the company’s by-laws and in connection with a governance review the insurer is required to have conducted by the beginning of 2006.

Lipp commented: “We are thankful for the significant contributions each of our directors has made as we have undertaken the important work of combining our two franchises. With that integration well underway, the Board of Directors feels that a reduction of the size of the Board is appropriate."

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