Eagle Star corporate chief quits after row

Eagle Star marketing and corporate affairs director Steve Wigzell has quit without a job to go to in the middle of a restructure of the marketing department. This was triggered by the recent merger of parent British American Financial Services with the Zurich Group.

Wigzell was in line for the position of business development and communications director in the new organisation. But Eagle Star spokesman Rob Skinner says: “Steve decided he wanted to pursue a career outside this company.”

Inside sources say Wigzell decided to leave over disagreements with chief executive Patrick O’Sullivan whom he reported to directly.

There are still a number of marketing appointments to be made as the future of the department is mapped out. Skinner says: “We are working on the support functions, including the marketing department.”

Wigzell masterminded a brand revamp for Eagle Star, which was tested in the Central TV region earlier this year. However, the proposed 12m national roll out has been put on hold until the future of the brand is decided, following the merger.

Wigzell spent 20 years as a director of planning and development for Allied Dunbar and BAT Financial Services. He became marketing director at Eagle Star in 1996.

Charlie Rosner, a marketing consultant from Public Sector Solutions, will caretake the marketing and corporate affairs director role until a replacement is found.

Management consultancy McKinsey’s was brought in to carry out an audit and find savings of 250m per year at Eagle Star prior to the merger announcement.

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