Aon plc has announced that Eric Andersen, Chief Executive Officer of Aon Benfield, and Michael O'Connor, Chief Executive Officer of Aon Risk Solutions, have been appointed Co-Presidents of the firm, effective immediately. As co-presidents, O'Connor and Andersen will continue to report to Aon's Chief Executive Officer, Greg Case, whose contract was recently extended by the Board of Directors until April of 2023.
Aon also announced it will retire the firm's remaining business unit brands – Aon Risk Solutions and Aon Benfield, which follows the retirement of the Aon Hewitt business unit brand in 2017 – and create an integrated global Operating Committee, co-led by Andersen and O'Connor. Both moves are designed to increase the rate of innovation across the firm and make it easier for colleagues to work together to bring the best of Aon to clients.
Aon previously announced a single P&L structure, which is part of an ongoing effort to increase colleague connectivity and accelerate reinvestment in innovation that serves clients. That effort is overseen by Aon's global CFO Christa Davies, whose contract was also recently extended by the Board of Directors until April of 2023.
"Aon's evolution into a leading global professional services firm has been driven by the tireless efforts of colleagues to work across our portfolio to deliver the best advice and solutions to clients," said Aon CEO, Greg Case. "This announcement recognizes those efforts and takes steps to remove structural barriers so that we can innovate new sources of value and realize the full potential of our firm."
Case added, "The appointment of Mike and Eric as co-presidents reflects the enormous contributions that they have made to the ongoing success of our firm. Both have proven track records and have played critical leadership roles across Aon, ensuring that they understand the breadth of our capabilities and how to bring them together to best serve our clients."
"I've worked side-by-side with Mike for the better part of a decade and am excited by the opportunity to continue that partnership in this new role," said Eric Andersen. "As much success as Aon has enjoyed, I believe that we have only just begun to realize our potential. By working together more closely, we can create more value for clients and exciting new opportunities for colleagues."
Mike O'Connor added, "I look forward to taking on this broader role and am energized by the idea of doing so with Eric. Our new global operating committee has an opportunity to further unite the business in a way that makes the whole of Aon greater than the sum of its parts. In doing so, we can bring our best to clients and deliver on the full potential of our integrated firm."
Case concluded, "By almost any measure, Aon has never been stronger or better positioned in the marketplace. That strength comes from the depth of our senior leadership team. I'm grateful to them for their support of these decisions and for agreeing to take on additional responsibilities. Our other exceptional solution line leaders, Cary Grace, CEO of Retirement Solutions, and John Zern, CEO of Health Solutions, as well as our Chief Operations Officer, John Bruno, will each add substantially to their remit."
"Cary Grace will now be responsible for Global M&A Integration in addition to her global leadership of Retirement Solutions, reinforcing the importance of adding new capabilities to address emerging client need and John Zern will add to his global Health Solutions responsibilities by also becoming CEO of North America for Commercial Risk Solutions, further underscoring the opportunity we have to work together across solution lines to create client value," said Case. "Now, more than ever, we believe that the insights we deliver through Data & Analytics are critical to unlocking the next wave of value for our clients and driving our long-term growth. That is why I have asked our Chief Operations Officer, John Bruno, to take on the additional role of CEO, Data & Analytic Services, and work closely with me and our CFO, Christa Davies, to enhance our current offerings and accelerate the commercialization of new data-driven, content solutions."
About Eric Andersen
Andersen has served in a number of important leadership positions throughout his over 20-year career at Aon, most recently as CEO of Aon Benfield and prior to that was CEO of Aon Risk Solutions Americas. Andersen first joined Aon in 1997 via the acquisition of Minet. Prior to that, Andersen also worked in London at Alexander Howden. Andersen earned an MBA in Finance from Fordham University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Colgate University. He sits on the board of Covenant House New Jersey, an organization that helps homeless, at-risk and runaway youth.
About Michael O'Connor
O'Connor joined Aon in 2008 and has served in various important leadership roles at Aon, most recently as CEO of Aon Risk Solutions and prior to that as COO of Aon Risk Solutions and Aon Benfield. Prior to Aon, O'Connor was a partner at McKinsey & Company, where he served as a leader for the North American Financial Services practice and the North American Insurance practice. O'Connor holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Chicago and an MBA in Finance and Management Information System as well as a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame. O'Connor serves on the board of the Rush University Medical Center.