MetLife to Tell Travelers Employees of Job Status

February 22, 2005

MetLife Inc. will inform employees of Travelers Life & Annuity in Hartford, Conn. by April 4 whether job cuts will be imposed after Travelers is acquired, according to a memo.

MetLife, which plans to buy Hartford-based Travelers and international insurance operations from Citigroup, will offer bonuses to employees who stay with the company and meet certain goals to keep the business running well, according to the memo.

New York-based MetLife will not disclose how many Travelers jobs could be axed.

The operations being sold in the $11.5 billion cash and stock deal employed 2,004 people in Hartford as of Dec. 31.

In addition to buying Travelers Life, MetLife also is acquiring nearly all of Citi’s international insurance business. The deal has been approved by both companies’ boards and is expected to close in the summer.

C. Robert Henrikson, MetLife’s president and chief operating officer, said in the memo he understands that Travelers employees are under stress and said the companies are “working aggressively to develop integration plans and timelines.”

“You should also know that one of the assets that attracted us to TL&A besides the market position was the highly respected skills of the people,” he said.

Travelers employees who are retained by MetLife will be eligible for an annual performance bonus for 2005 that would be paid in March 2006. The amount will be determined by MetLife management in consultation with Travelers’ current management, the memo said.

For Travelers employees who are not offered jobs, MetLife said it will add another 25 percent to the severance agreed upon with Citigroup. The agreement had said Travelers employees who are laid off within six months of the deal’s completion would get two weeks’ pay for each year of service, up to a maximum of 52 weeks’ pay.

Travelers employees who are losing their jobs, but remain employed with MetLife for more than 10 business days after the closing date will be eligible for an annual bonus for 2005. The bonuses would be based on the 2004 Travelers program.

Employees who are not eligible for 2004 bonuses would be eligible for a payment of up to 15 percent of base salary.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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