In a blow to its economy and nickname, Hartford, “The Insurance Capital of the World,” will no longer host the headquarters of Aetna, one of the largest insurance companies in the country.
Aetna, which employs 5,800 Connecticut residents, announced in a Wednesday statement that it is negotiating with several states to find a new home for its headquarters. Despite the headquarter shakeup, Gov. Dannel Malloy expressed hope during a news conference Wednesday that the majority of those jobs will stay in Connecticut.
But for some, Aetna’s announcement raises concerns about Connecticut’s ability to house large market companies. Aetna follows General Electric and Pfizer as companies moving their operations away from the state.
Mayor Toni Harp said in a statement Wednesday that the news is “markedly disconcerting” for Hartford and signals cause for great concern throughout Connecticut.
“This is another forceful reminder that economic growth is closely tied to the innovation found in vibrant urban communities,” Harp said. “Even in this most difficult budget cycle, we need to accelerate a statewide economic strategy focused on the state’s cities — the job-generating innovation centers of Connecticut.”
Aetna, which had been headquartered in Hartford since 1853, hopes to have relocation plans finalized by early summer.