Apparently, someone told Robert Benmosche that running the world’s largest and most fucked-up insurer was going to be a cakewalk, because three months into the job and two months after returning from a vacation at his Croatian villa, the CEO is talking about throwing in the towel, owing to the restrictions placed on him by the company’s owners, the good old United States government.
From the Journal:
At a board meeting last week, the strong-willed industry executive told fellow AIG directors that he was “done” but agreed to think it over after other board members reacted with shock, according to the people. During the three-hour meeting, board members discussed difficulties of complying with pay policies and retaining talent at the company. Mr. Benmosche’s frustrations “hit a crescendo,” said a person familiar with the matter. “Bob feels he is in an impossible situation,” the person added.
Well yeah. Wait: Didn’t he know all of this when he took the job? We’d assumed when he signed on to head AIG he did so because he had some kind of David Blaine-like penchant for putting himself into impossible situations. But apparently, Benmosche was actually on an information blackout for the whole of 2008-2009 and had no idea when he signed the contract what the hell he was getting himself into. Which makes sense, because why else would he have signed up? Why would anybody? We wonder what the board told him to take the gig. That he was being hired to run an insurance company?