THE flurry of finance directors quitting blue-chip companies for new pastures gathered pace yesterday when insurance giant Aviva revealed that Pat Regan is leaving.
Regan, who joined Aviva as chief financial officer (CFO) in February 2010, is leaving the group in June to join Australian insurer QBE in the same role, based in Sydney.
Aviva, which employs 2,500 in general insurance at Perth and Bishopbriggs, said the search for a replacement was under way.
The company said in a stock exchange statement that it was “committed to appointing a first-class CFO commensurate with the standing of the group”.
Mark Wilson, who became Aviva’s chief executive in 2012, said: “After a successful career at Aviva, Pat has decided to take a new role outside the group.
“Pat has been a tremendous support in assisting me with Aviva’s financial transformation. I am supportive of his decision, and he leaves with my best wishes and those of Aviva’s board.”
Regan said he was excited about his new role at QBE, but was “also sad to be leaving Aviva”. He said the British insurer was “a great business with a bright future”.
He added: “I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Mark and I wish him and everyone who works for Aviva all the best for the future.”
It is the latest in a stream of defections from leading publicly quoted British businesses.
They include Nick Luff, who announced earlier this month that he was stepping down as CFO of Scottish Gas-owning Centrica to join publishing giant Reed Elsevier.
Luff is replacing Duncan Palmer, who is leaving Reed Elsevier due to family circumstances next September. Simon Herrick resigned as CFO of Debenhams department store group following poor Christmas trading and a profits warning at the retailer.
Nathan Bostock has announced he is stepping down as chief financial officer at Royal Bank of Scotland to become deputy chief executive at rival Santander UK.