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Zurich board proposes name change to focus on insurance

Zurich board proposes name change to focus on insurance

ZURICH—Zurich Financial Services Ltd. said Wednesday that its board of directors has proposed changing its name to reflect the company's strategic focus on insurance.

The new name, Zurich Insurance Group Ltd., will be brought to the March 29 annual shareholder meeting, the Zurich-based insurer said in a statement.

“Zurich has streamlined its business portfolio to concentrate on insurance,” Zurich said in the statement. “In recognition of this strategic focus, the board of directors proposes to replace the reference to financial services in the company name by indicating the insurance activity of the group instead and to specify the purpose accordingly.”

After the retirement of board Chairman Manfred Gentz and board member Vernon L. Sankey, Zurich's board will propose electing two new board members, Alison Carnwath and Rafael del Pino.

Ms. Carnwath is chairman of London-based Land Securities Group P.L.C. and is a member of the board at Barclays P.L.C., Man Group P.L.C. and PACCAR Inc.

Mr. del Pino is executive chairman and managing director of Madrid-based Ferrovial S.A. and a member of the board at Banco Espanol de Crédito S.A. and the international advisory board of Blackstone Group L.P.

Zurich said the board will decide its structure and proposed chairman in advance of the annual general meeting at which shareholders will vote on the proposals.