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Thoresen to take over at Aegon as Henderson steps down

Aegon UK chief executive David Henderson is retiring after six years in the role.

Henderson, who is the long-est-serving CEO of a Scottish life office, will retire in March 2005 and will be replaced by finance director Otto Thoresen.

Mark Laidlaw, who joined Aegon UK in 1988, has been appointed chief financial off-icer, replacing Thoresen from April 2005.

Henderson, who will be 60 at the end of the month, joined Scottish Equitable in 1971. He masterminded the company&#39s demutualisation alongside collea-gues David Berridge and William Stewart. Aegon bought 40 per cent of ScotEq in 1993 and increased this to 100 per cent in 1997, with Henderson being appointed chief executive of the group.

In October 1999, Hend-erson oversaw Aegon&#39s purchase of the life and pension business of Guardian Royal Exchange from Axa for £702m, significantly increasing Aegon&#39s presence in the UK market.

Thoresen was the driving force behind the group&#39s expansion of its UK distribution, which saw it take majority stakes in six IFA businesses since 2002. In May this year, five of these businesses came together to form Origen, a single IFA company targeting the high-net-worth individual and professional conn-ections market.

Aegon also has minority stakes in Assureweb, Ber-keley Berry Birch, Light-house, Millfield Group, Personal Touch and most recently Tenet Group.

Henderson says: “I am utt-erly convinced that the company will be one of the winn-ers in both manufacturing and distribution capability, whatever shape the future financial services market takes.

“Otto Thoresen will bring strong business and communications capacity to the CEO role as well as terrific links worldwide with the rest of the group.”

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