(Reuters) – Scor SE non-executive chairman Denis Kessler, credited with making the French reinsurer one of the leading players in its field, has died aged 71, the company said on Friday.
Kessler joined Scor in November 2002 as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, a position he held until June 2021, when Laurent Rousseau was named CEO. It came amid a campaign led by activist investor CIAM to oust Mr. Kessler due to underperforming stock prices and corporate governance concerns.
CIAM was also unhappy. Mr Kessler had in 2019 successfully resisted an 8.5 billion euro ($9.2 billion) takeover bid by Scor’s largest shareholder Covea Mutual Insurance Group Co.
Rousseau was replaced last May by Thierry Leger as CEO.
Scor̵7;s vice chairman of the board, Augustin de Romanet, will be acting chairman until a new one is appointed.
“Denis Kessler spectacularly turned the group around over a period of more than two decades, enabling it to become a leading global reinsurer,” Scor said in a statement.