Friday 24 May 2019 7:45 am

Old Mutual suspends chief executive Peter Moyo over 'breakdown in trust'

Insurance giant Old Mutual has suspended its chief executive over what it termed a “material breakdown in trust”.

Read more: Merian Global Investors boss steps down after Old Mutual spin off

Peter Moyo is suspended with immediate effect, the board told investors this morning, with chief operating officer Iain Williamson stepping in to fill the role for the time being.

“Shareholders are advised that the board has had various engagements with Mr Peter Moyo, the OML and Old Mutual Life Assurance Company Limited (OMLACSA) Chief Executive Officer,” Old Mutual’s board said.

“These engagements have caused the board to conclude that there has been a material breakdown in trust and confidence between him and the board.”

The South African insurer made the extraordinary statement to investors this morning but has not provided any further details.

The country's second biggest insurer lost its FTSE 100 listing last June after splitting itself in half to turn its wealth management arm into Quilter.

Quilter boosted profits amid a challenging market last year.

Both Old Mutual and Quilter are jointly listed in London and Johannesburg.

Moyo first worked at Old Mutual up to 2005 when he left to take over the top spot at Alexander Forbes. Upon his return in June 2017 he became CEO of Old Mutual Emerging Markets and later Old Mutual itself.

Read more: Quilter assets under management increase despite market challenges

Before his time at the insurer he was a partner with Ernst & Young and has chaired the boards of Vodacom, Willis SA Proprietary and CSC SA Proprietary.

At the time of writing he was still listed as a serving member of Nedbank's board, as the chairperson of Business Against Crime South Africa, and the founding director NMT Capital Group.