Beazley profits dip in 2014
Beazley profits fell in 2014 as higher than average reserve releases and foreign exchange impact took their toll.
Its profits fell to $261.9 million in the year ended December 31, 2014, a fall of 16 percent compared with $313.3 million in 2013.
Beazley said that the deterioration in its combined ratio, 89 percent in 2014, 5 percentage points higher than 84 percent in 2013, was driven by the above average prior year reserve releases in 2013.
This change in the combined ratio, coupled with a slightly higher FX impact, reduced profits by about $80 million, although this was partially compensated by achieving about $30 million more investment and other income than in 2013, according to the company.
Its gross written premiums grew by three percent to $2 billion in 2014, compared with $1.97 billion in 2013. Its net written premiums also grew by three percent to $1.7 billion, compared with $1.67 billion in 2013.
Andrew Horton, chief executive officer, said: “Beazley delivered another strong performance in 2014. Our business grew while achieving a combined ratio of 89 percent in an increasingly competitive market.
“During the course of the year, we celebrated the tenth anniversary of our business in the United States. Premium underwritten by our US operations grew by 19 percent in 2014 to $537 million.
“We continue to make long term investments in our businesses around the world, looking beyond the pressures of this underwriting cycle. We hired 40 new underwriters in the course of 2014 and opened new offices in Dubai and Dallas.”