A couple of weeks ago, Marsh CEO Brian Duperreault didn’t want to comment on rumors surrounding the sale of its subsidiary Kroll, which provides investigative services. The annual shareholder meeting, he was quoted as saying, was not the time or the place to discuss the future of a significant subsidiary.
Today’s news tells us why he was quiet:
Marsh & McLennan Cos Inc agreed to sell investigations unit Kroll to a firm led by former Marsh CEO Michael Cherkasky for less than the insurance broker paid for Kroll six years ago.
MMC bought Kroll in 2004 for $1.9 billion and sold it back for $1.13 billion.
Duperrault’s reticence makes sense. If I had to say, “We’re planning to sell the business for a third less than we paid for it six years ago,” I’d keep quiet, too.
Snark aside, the markets are cool with the sale. Insurance Journal’s story notes MMC stock is up 19 cents in morning trading.