Berkshire-Invested Verisk Promotes Hays to Run Health Unit After Sales Slump

Verisk Promotes Hays to Run Health Unit After Sales Slump

Verisk Analytics Inc. (VRSK), the supplier of actuarial and risk data to banks and insurers, promoted Nadine Hays to lead the health unit after a slump in sales. Hays was named president of the business, which has 1,850 employees and focuses on clinical risk-assessment technologies and data, the Jersey City, New Jersey-based company said today in a statement. She replaces Joel Portice, who is leaving to “pursue other interests” and will report to Verisk Chief Executive Officer Scott Stephenson, according to the statement.Verisk plunged 8.6 percent to $62 on Nov. 6, its biggest drop since 2009, after revenue missed analysts’ estimates as growth slowed in the health segment. Third-quarter health-care sales climbed 6.2 percent to $73.6 million from a year earlier. That compares with a 21 percent increase in the second quarter.

Hays plans to “help our customers navigate the unprecedented challenges that the health-care market is facing,” she said in the statement.

She was previously executive vice president and head of sales, marketing and strategic partnerships at the health unit. Hays joined through the company’s 2009 acquisition of D2Hawkeye, a health-care data company where she served as chief marketing officer. She graduated from University of California, Santa Barbara, and holds a law degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.

‘Mutually Agreeable’

Portice’s departure results from a “mutually agreeable decision,” Verisk said in an e-mailed statement today. He “played an important role in bringing together the company’s health-care strategy and acquisitions under a unified brand and single management team. Verisk thanks Joel for his contribution and wishes him well in his future endeavors.”

Verisk slipped 0.2 percent to $63.19 at 4:30 p.m. in New York. The company has advanced 24 percent this year, trailing the 25 percent gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

Growth at the health unit was “below our plan,” Stephenson said Nov. 5 when it announced third-quarter results. “But we remain enthusiastic about our longer-term outlook.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Marci Jacobs in New York at

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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (, the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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