GE CEO says company looking to restructure portfolio, potentially break up major divisions

General Electric is considering a wealth of options, including breaking up the company into separate divisions, following a significant charge the company received related to its legacy insurance business, CEO and Chairman John Flannery said during a conference call with analysts Tuesday, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Mr. Flannery told analysts the company is considering several options to restructure its portfolio and has not made any concrete restructuring decisions.

"We are looking aggressively at the best structure or structures for our portfolio to maximize the potential of our businesses," he said, adding a review of the company may "result in many, many different permutations, including separately traded assets really in any one of our units, if that's what made sense."

Mr. Flannery revealed tentative plans in November to restructure operations and focus on the company's aviation, energy and healthcare businesses. He also previously said GE would sell roughly $20 billion in other assets, the report states.

Sources told CNBC Tuesday GE is likely to embrace a major breakup of the company.

Mr. Flannery also informed analysts Tuesday GE received a $9.5 billion pretax charge related to GE Capital's North American Life & Health portfolio, according to the Los Angeles Times report. The after-tax amount, $6.2 billion, will be adjusted to $7.5 billion following the recent U.S. tax overhaul. The Los Angeles Times reports GE's finance business will pay $15 billion over a seven-year period to fill a shortfall in reserves. The company has not conducted any new business in the long-term care market since 2006, according to the report.

"Our results over the past several years including 2017 and the insurance charge only further my belief that we need to continue to move with purpose to reshape GE. We will continue to rigorously review our alternatives to deliver shareholder value, and report out to you as we make progress this spring," Mr. Flannery said Tuesday.

Editor's note: Becker's Hospital Review reached out to GE for comment and will update the story as more information becomes available.

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