AIG introduces new CEO role and tech-focused subsidiary

The insurer’s former head of Asia Pacific is returning to the fold

AIG’s executive rank and service offering continues to grow. The insurer has announced that Chris Townsend, a P&C industry veteran, will return to the company in the newly created role of CEO of international general insurance. In addition, AIG is introducing its new tech-focused subsidiary, Blackboard, to the industry.

Townsend will lead the international operations of AIG’s general insurance business, with responsibility for executing its growth strategy and building on the company’s international footprint, according to AIG’s announcement released Monday.

Related: AIG welcomes new head of reinsurance

He will report to Peter Zaffino, CEO of general insurance, and is expected to join the company in the first quarter of 2018.

Townsend brings more than 25 years of experience to the new role as well as a previous connection to AIG. He was CEO of the insurer’s Asia Pacific region with oversight of 15 countries between 2010 and 2012. He also served as president of MetLife’s Asia region.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Chris back to AIG,” said Zaffino in a statement. “He is a highly experienced leader in the insurance industry who knows our company well. He brings deep international expertise to our team, as well as a proven track record of delivering strong financial and operating results. I look forward to partnering with Chris as we strategically position [the] general insurance [arm] for the future.”

AIG also announced on Monday that it will rebrand Hamilton USA, which it acquired from Hamilton Insurance Group this year. The new AIG subsidiary is now called Blackboard and will have a heavy technology focus.

Related: AIG welcomes new CEO

“Blackboard’s vision is to reimagine and transform commercial insurance through digital technology, data analytics, and automation. The name represents a clean slate and alternative solution for those in the industry who want to work together to leave behind the burden of inefficient, manual processes and outdated systems,” the announcement states.

“The company will help clients and brokers move faster and with more insight so that they can focus on what’s important: relationships, building business, and reinvesting for growth,” it continues.

Blackboard will operate as a startup that is backed by AIG’s resources. It is expected to launch by the second half of 2018.

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