U.K. CEO Exits after Row on Pay

After Aviva CEO Moss presided over falling stock price, majority of shareholders voted against pay plans.

Aviva Plc, the U.K.’s second-biggest insurer, said Andrew Moss quit as chief executive officer after presiding over an almost 60 percent fall in the share price in the last five years and a row about pay. The stock rose.

The firm’s incoming chairman, John McFarlane, will immediately become interim executive deputy chairman, the London-based insurer said today in a statement. Finance Director Pat Regan, Andy Haste, former RSA Insurance Group Plc CEO, and Trevor Matthews, CEO of the insurer’s U.K. business, were named by analysts as possible successors to Moss.

Aviva Shares Decline

Aviva lost almost 12 billion pounds in market value during Moss’s five years in charge, which began in July 2007 and spanned the financial crash of 2008 and Europe’s sovereign debt crisis. The firm is the worst performer in the nine-member FTSE ASX Life Insurance Index during that time, falling 59 percent compared with the index’s 30 percent drop.

U.S. Reversal

As finance director, Moss approved the company’s $3.1 billion acquisition of Des Moines, Iowa-based Amerus Group Co. to expand in the U.S. He deemed the U.S. division one of the company’s 12 key markets last year.

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