Apollo-Backed Athene Names Klein CFO, Easing Path to IPO

  • Genworth's former finance chief follows Cushing, who resigned
  • CEO Belardi said hiring was `top priority' before share sale

Athene Holding Ltd., the annuity seller with ties to Apollo Global Management LLC, hired Genworth Financial Inc.’s Martin Klein as chief financial officer as it pushes toward an initial public offering.

Klein, 56, joins Nov. 9, Athene said Monday in a statement. The post was previously held by Brenda Cushing, who said in May that she was stepping down from the Bermuda-based company. Genworth, the insurer that has declined more than 60 percent in New York trading since the end of 2013, said on Thursday that Klein planned to leave to take another job.

Athene pushed back a plan to file for the IPO as it searched for a CFO, according to a statement issued Oct. 5 by AP Alternative Assets, a publicly traded investment vehicle managed by Apollo, and Athene’s largest shareholder. Athene in February disclosed a material weakness in controls over financial reporting and has had to restate some results. Athene has said that results for the quarter ended Sept. 30 will be included in a filing next year.

Klein brings “extensive financial, leadership and public-company experience,” Chief Executive Officer Jim Belardi said in the statement. “His appointment is another positive step for Athene as we continue to build upon our already strong executive team.” Belardi had said this month that filling the CFO post was a “top priority.”

The firm hired former MetLife Inc. executive William Wheeler in September as president to help guide the IPO. An initial prospectus is expected to be filed in early 2016 with a deadline of June 30, AP Alternative Assets has said. The firm had previously set a deadline of Nov. 30.

Accounting Shortcomings

Klein worked to fix accounting shortcomings at Richmond, Virginia-based Genworth, which endured higher-than-expected costs on long-term care insurance. The policies cover expenses for home health aides or nursing home stays.

He was hired as CFO in 2011 from Barclays Plc and led Genworth as acting CEO for most of 2012, working to stem mortgage losses and simplify the company. He previously worked at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Zurich Insurance Group AG.

Klein is scheduled to leave Genworth Oct. 30, the insurer said.

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