Swiss Re shareholders approve all proposals put forward by the Board of Directors at the 145th Annual General Meeting

Swiss Re shareholders approve all proposals put forward by the Board of Directors at the 145th Annual General Meeting
13 Mar 2009

At Swiss Re’s Annual General Meeting today in Zurich, shareholders approved all proposals put forward by the Board of Directors. In particular, shareholders approved the creation of conditional capital to secure the necessary underlying shares for the convertible perpetual capital instrument to be issued to Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Jakob Baer and John R. Coomber were re-elected to the Board for a three-year term.

Peter Forstmoser, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Swiss Re, thanked shareholders for their trust and their continued support. He said: “The approval of the capital increase means that Swiss Re’s financial strength will be further reinforced. This will allow us to continue to capture upcoming reinsurance market opportunities and to strengthen our core business even further.”

At Swiss Re’s Annual General Meeting today in Zurich, shareholders approved:

the annual report and the annual and consolidated financial statements for the 2008 financial year
a dividend for 2008 of CHF 0.10 per share
the discharge of the members of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for the 2008 financial year
the creation of conditional capital by not more than 160 million shares to secure the necessary underlying shares for the convertible perpetual capital instrument to be issued to Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
the creation of authorised capital by not more than 180 million shares; at this point in time, Swiss Re does
not intend to conduct a rights issue
Board members re-elected at the Meeting for a three-year term were Jakob Baer and John R. Coomber. Further, shareholders re-elected PricewaterhouseCoopers AG, Zurich (PwC) as auditor for a term of office of one year.

A total of 1 869 shareholders, representing 54.85% of Swiss Re’s voting shares, took part in this year’s Ordinary General Meeting.

Peter Forstmoser concluded: “After nine fascinating years as Chairman of Swiss Re, I hand over to Walter B. Kielholz on 1 May. With his immense knowledge and experience in reinsurance, Walter is the best choice for Swiss Re in these difficult times. Together with Mathis Cabiallavetta, who will succeed Walter as Vice Chairman, they form a strong team in heading the Board of Directors.”

Having served sixteen years on the Board of Directors of Swiss Re, Thomas W. Bechtler and Bénédict G.F. Hentsch did not stand for re-election at this year’s Annual General Meeting. Equally, Kaspar Villiger, following his nomination for the role of Chairman by the UBS Board of Directors, resigned as a member of the Board with effect from today, 13 March 2009. Mr Villiger joined Swiss Re’s Board of Directors in 2004 for a four-year term and was re-elected in 2008 for a three-year term.

The speeches by Peter Forstmoser, Chairman, and Stefan Lippe, CEO, can be found below.

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