Cost reductions and life boost results at Generali
Italian insurer Generali posted a strong set of results for 2017 including a record operating result, a performance it attributed to its life business, asset and wealth management segment, investment performance and implementing cost reductions ahead of schedule.
The company posted an operating result of €4.89 billion, an increase of 2.3 percent compared with 2016; its net profit for the year was €2.1 billion, an increase of 1.4 percent. The company has cut costs by €200 million two years ahead of schedule.
The strong performance in areas such as life and wealth management, compensated for a decrease in its P/C operating result, which fell by 4.9 percent to €1.97 billion. On the property/casualty side, it posted a combined ratio of 92.8 percent.
It said this was largely due to €416 million in natural catastrophe claims that mainly came from the US hurricanes and the storms that swept Central Europe as well as by the lower contribution of investment returns in a low interest rate environment.
Philippe Donnet, group chief executive of Generali Group, said: “The excellent results that we presented today confirm the validity and effectiveness of our strategic plan in this current market context. We are perfectly positioned to reach all of our objectives that we had set for 2018.
“In light of these results, the Board of Directors will propose a dividend of €0.85 per share, an increase of 6 per cent from €0.80 in 2016. Our focus on technical excellence, combined with the results of our Investments, asset & wealth management business and the cost reduction target hit two years ahead of schedule, have pushed the operating result to record levels.
“In 2017, we implemented a series of important projects, such as the launch of the new asset management strategy, the rationalizing of the international footprint and the transformation of our German business - all initiatives that contribute to the overall resilience of our Group. These results, obtained thanks to the daily commitment and passion of our colleagues, agents and collaborators, allow us to look to the future with confidence and to create sustainable value for all of our stakeholders.”
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