Suicide of Zurich Insurance executive Martin Senn announced

His death follows the suicide, three years ago, of another Zurich Insurance executive.
By Ed Adamczyk Contact the Author   |  May 30, 2016 at 2:35 PM
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KLOSTERS , Switzerland, May 30 (UPI) -- Swiss police are investigating the apparent suicide of former Zurich Insurance Group CEO Martin Senn, officials said Monday.

Senn, 59, resigned from the company in December, citing the company's business setbacks under his direction. A spokesman for the police in Switzerland's Graubunden canton, where Senn had a vacation home, confirmed the death; Senn's family reported it as suicide.

His death follows, by three years, the suicide of Pierre Wauthier, 53, Zurich Insurance Group's former chief financial officer. Wauthier left behind a note mentioning internal tensions within the company, and undue pressure placed on him by then-chairman Josef Ackermann. A probe by Swiss financial regulators cleared company leaders of placing inordinate stress on Wauthier, but Ackermann resigned shortly after the suicide.

Swiss media reports said Senn shot himself Friday. The Graubunden police did not confirm the means of death, but said no suicide note has been found.

When he left the company in December, Senn cited problems in revamping its business and its failure to acquire the British insurer RSA Insurance Group PLC. In February, Zurich Insurance announced a larger-than-expected fourth quarter loss, adding about 15 percent of the company's employees would be affected by new cost-cutting policies.

A statement Monday by Zurich Insurance read in part, "With the passing of Martin, we lose not only a highly valued former CEO and colleague, but also a close friend."

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