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The Aig Storyby Maurice R. Greenberg and Lawrence A. Cunningham
Synopses & Reviews
A legendary CEO tells the inside story of building the world's largest insurance company—and the dramatic tale of its near-destruction after he left in early 2005, as successors transformed AIG and drove it to the center of the financial crisis of 2008
In 1962, Maurice Greenberg was handed leadership of a small, failing insurance company. By 2004, American International Group (AIG) had become the world's eighteenth largest company. Then the financial crisis hit and "Hank" Greenberg's magnificent creation teetered on the brink. You've read other accounts of AIG. Now read the inside story.
In The AIG Story, Maurice Greenberg enlists Lawrence Cunningham to help chronicle the origins of the company and its relentless pioneering of open markets everywhere in the world. They regale readers with riveting vignettes of how AIG grew from a modest group of insurance enterprises in 1970 to the largest insurance company in world history. They help us understand AIG's distinctive entrepreneurial culture and how its outstanding employees worldwide helped pave the road to globalization.
My Story of AIG chronicles the strategic growth of American International Group (AIG) from a modest group of insurance enterprises in 1960, to the largest insurance company in the world by 2005, when its CEO of 37 years, Hank Greenberg, stepped down. The book is a corporate and business history interwoven with much of U.S. and international activity during the latter half of the twentieth century. It is the story of the world’s rough ride toward globalization and the triumph of free and open markets over communism, nationalism, protectionism, and isolationism. It is a story of how AIG helped pave that road. Without overshadowing that chronicle, the book will also address-briefly in chapter one and more fully in the last quarter-how the actions of an ambitious politician, Eliot Spitzer, weakened AIG in 2005, and examine the 2008 seizure of AIG by the U.S. government amid the financial crisis. Through Greenberg's first-hand experience, as well as interviews by Lawrence Cunningham, corporate governance expert, professor and writer, the book will include considerable information that has not previously been made public.
In The AIG Story, the company's long-term CEO Hank Greenberg (1967 to 2005) and GW professor and corporate governance expert Lawrence Cunningham chronicle the origins of the company and its relentless pioneering of open markets everywhere in the world. They regale readers with riveting vignettes of how AIG grew from a modest group of insurance enterprises in 1970 to the largest insurance company in world history. They help us understand AIG's distinctive entrepreneurial culture and how its outstanding employees worldwide helped pave the road to globalization.
The AIG Story captures an impressive saga in business history--one of innovation, vision and leadership at a company that was nearly--destroyed with a few strokes of governmental pens. The AIG Story carries important lessons and implications for the U.S., especially its role in international affairs, its approach to business, its legal system and its handling of financial crises.
About the Author
Maurice R. Greenberg is Chairman and CEO of C.V. Starr & Co., Inc. He joined C.V. Starr & Co., Inc. as Vice President in 1960 and was given the additional responsibilities of President of American Home Assurance Company in 1962. He was elected Director of C.V. Starr & Co., Inc. in 1965, Chairman and CEO in 1968 and continues in that role. Mr. Greenberg retired as Chairman and CEO of American International Group, Inc. (AIG) in March 2005, after serving as Chief Executive Officer from 1967. Under his leadership, AIG became the largest insurance company in the world and generated unprecedented value for AIG shareholders. During the nearly forty years of his leadership, AIG's market value grew from $300 million to $l80 billion.
Lawrence A. Cunningham is the Henry St. George Tucker III Research Professor at the George Washington University Law School and Director of GW's Center for Law, Economics and Finance (C-LEAF) in New York. Previous books include Contracts in the Real World: Stories of Popular Contracts and Why They Matter (Cambridge University Press 2012). His writings—on a wide range of business and legal topics—have also appeared in leading scholarly journals and such periodicals as the New York Times, the Financial Times, and the New York Daily News.
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