The new management team, in its initial assessment of the Company’s organizational design, has identified a number of positions that it can eliminate and leases it can exit to realize cost savings. The assessment is ongoing but will be completed in the first quarter of 2013 and is expected to result in the elimination of approximately 200 full-time positions.
As a result, Willis Group expects to incur a pre-tax charge of approximately $35 million to $45 million in the first quarter of 2013. These actions are expected to deliver cost savings, primarily through headcount reduction, of approximately $20 million to $25 million in 2013, beginning in the second quarter, and annualized cost savings of approximately $25 million to $30 million.
DividendsAt its February 2013 Board meeting, the Board of Directors approved a 3.7% increase in the regular quarterly cash dividend from $0.27 per share to $0.28 per share (an annual rate of $1.12 per share). The dividend is payable on April 15, 2013, to shareholders of record at March 29, 2013. Conference Call and Web Cast A conference call to discuss the fourth quarter 2012 results will be held on Wednesday, February 13, 2013, at 8:00 AM Eastern Time. To participate in the live teleconference, please dial (866) 803-2143 (U.S.) or +1 (210) 795-1098 (international) with a pass code of “Willis”. The live audio web cast (which will be listen-only) may be accessed at www.willis.com. This call will be available by replay starting at approximately 10:00 AM Eastern Time, and through March 13, 2013, at 5:00 PM Eastern Time, by calling (800) 813-5526 (domestic) or + 1 (402) 280-1632 (international) with no pass code, or by accessing the website. The Company may refer to a slide presentation during its conference call. The slides will be available to view and download from the Events & Presentations page in the Investor Relations section of the Company’s website at www.willis.com. About Willis Willis Group Holdings plc is a leading global insurance broker. Through its subsidiaries, Willis develops and delivers professional insurance, reinsurance, risk management, financial and human resource consulting and actuarial services to corporations, public entities and institutions around the world. Willis has more than 400 offices in nearly 120 countries, with a global team of approximately 17,000 employees serving clients in virtually every part of the world. Additional information on Willis may be found at www.willis.com. Forward-Looking Statements We have included in this document ‘forward-looking statements' within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which are intended to be covered by the safe harbors created by those laws. These forward-looking statements include information about possible or assumed future results of our operations. All statements, other than statements of historical facts that address activities, events or developments that we expect or anticipate may occur in the future, including such things as our outlook, future capital expenditures, growth in commissions and fees, business strategies, competitive strengths, goals, the benefits of new initiatives, growth of our business and operations, plans and references to future successes, are forward-looking statements. Also, when we use the words such as ‘anticipate,' ‘believe,' ‘estimate,' ‘expect,' ‘intend,' ‘plan,' ‘probably,' or similar expressions, we are making forward-looking statements.