NEW YORK, March 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Paulson & Co. Inc. ("Paulson") (Bloomberg: 573991Z), the beneficial owner of 37,540,676 shares, or 8.5%, of The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. ("The Hartford") (NYSE: HIG), and The Hartford's largest shareholder, today responded to The Hartford's earlier announcement and conference call presentation:
"We support today's actions, not as a conclusion of the strategic review, but as a first step in creating a clear delineation between The Hartford's P&C and non-P&C businesses.
We are pleased that The Hartford is taking steps to focus on core operations and to divest or discontinue non-core and capital intensive businesses. We believe that putting the variable annuity business in runoff and selling the non-core individual life, retirement plans and broker dealer businesses will raise cash, free up capital, permit deleveraging and increase its financial flexibility. Successful execution of these plans will strengthen the Company's ability to separate the P&C and non-P&C businesses in the future, which we continue to believe would create the greatest short-term and long-term shareholder value and strengthen the company.
While we appreciate the extensive work of The Hartford's board and management, we do not believe the positive actions announced today address the main problem with The Hartford's undervaluation: the lack of interest from P&C analysts and P&C investors in The Hartford's best-in-class P&C business due to its affiliation with unrelated, low-return and complex businesses. We do not believe today's actions will materially increase P&C investor interest in The Hartford."
For further information, please contact:
Investor contact: Charles Murphy, Paulson & Co. 212-956-2221 Media contact: Armel Leslie, Walek & Associates, 212 590-0530
Paulson & Co. is an investment management firm that specializes in merger arbitrage, event-driven and distressed investing. Paulson has approximately US$24 billion in assets under management and has offices in New York, London and Hong Kong.
SOURCE Paulson & Co. Inc.