Brazilian reinsurer IRB Brasil Resseguros SA (IRB Brasil Re) has replaced its President and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) after confusion about a possible investment by Berkshire Hathaway caused the company’s shares to plummet by 32%.
President José Carlos Cardoso and CFO Fernando Passos submitted their resignations to the Board on March 4 after confirming that Warren Buffett’s company had not taken a stake in IRB Brasil Re.
Werner Süffert, a former member of the Board of Directors at IRB Brasil Re and former CFO and IRO of BB Seguridade, will now take over as Finance and Investor Relations Executive Vice President.
He will also serve as interim President until a new executive is appointed.
Brazilian media reported last week that Berkshire Hathaway had taken a large stake in IRB Brasil Re and would be adding a member to the reinsurer’s Board.
Reports suggest that IRB confirmed this news on March 2, but in a new statement the company maintains that it “never stated” that Berkshire Hathaway was a shareholder.
Regardless, these false reports led to rating downgrades and reassessments of IRB’s value that caused shares to plunge.
IRB recently reported its results for 2019, which saw net income increased 45% to 1.764 billion reais (US $400 million), marking several years of consistently improving performance.