(Bloomberg) — American International Group Inc., built by Maurice “Hank” Greenberg into the world’s largest insurer, has shrunk by half through a series of asset sales that ended this week with the divestiture of a plane-leasing unit.
The contraction began in 2008, the year AIG needed a U.S. bailout, and included the sale of units from Hong Kong to Israel, and real estate from New York to Tokyo. The deals helped narrow the company’s focus and generated about $79 billion for AIG, which returned the last of the taxpayer funds in 2012.
“They sold off a great many of the crown jewels,” Greenberg, who led AIG for almost four decades through 2005, said in a 2011 interview on Bloomberg Television. “How long is it going to take to rebuild?”
The insurer’s market value is about $76 billion, compared with $148 billion at the end of 2007. The employee count is down 45% in the six years ended Dec. 31 to 64,000.
Investment banks, buyout firms and insurers were among those who benefited from New York-based AIG’s distress. MetLife Inc., the largest U.S. life insurer, paid more than $16 billion in 2010 for American Life Insurance Co. Fortress Investment Group LLC paid $125 million that year for most of AIG’s subprime lender. Fortress’s stake in the business, now named Springleaf Holdings Inc., is valued at about $1.75 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
The following table lists AIG’s divestitures and the dates they were announced.
*Includes assumed debt.
**Excludes potential $135 million payment based on future performance.
+Includes sale of additional shares later in the month.
~AIG divested in multiple offerings.
^Excludes potential purchase of assets for $61.2 million.
^^Includes previously disclosed deals such as Spanish solar plants to HG Capital, interests in oil and gas contracts to an undisclosed buyer and stakes in gas storage and marketing ventures to Tenaska.
#Includes $3 billion in cash and 97.6 million AerCap shares. Valuation is based on AerCap’s May 13 closing price.
–With assistance from Andrew Frye in Rome, Noah Buhayar, Kevin Reynolds, David M. Levitt, Rick Green, Zachary R. Mider, Cristina Alesci and Devin Banerjee in New York, Cathy Chan, Janet Ong and Philip Lagerkranser in Hong Kong, Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv, Jun Luo in Shanghai, Julie Johnsson in Chicago, Marta Waldoch in Warsaw, Tomoko Yamazaki in Singapore, Komaki Ito in Tokyo, Carolyn Bandel in Zurich, Anuchit Nguyen in Bangkok, Sarah McDonald in Sydney and Doug Alexander in Toronto.