Generali's profit slides 35% in 2020; CEO Donnet hails 'excellent' results
Profits fell 34.7 percent at Italian insurer Generali in the financial year 2020 despite seeing positive performance in the property/casualty, asset management and other business segments. Chief executive Philippe Donnet praised the results achieved in the face of an unprecedented crisis.
Donnet said the "excellent results" highlight Generali's resilience compared to peers in the sector, both from a technical point of view and its capital position.
He noted that the company has entered the final year of its strategic plan and is "well positioned" to achieve all of the objectives of ‘Generali 2021’. The insurer has implemented a new organisational structure and accelerated its business transformation to prepare for the next strategic cycle.
Generali reported a net profit of €1.74 billion in full-year 2020, down 34.7 percent on the net profit of €2.67 billion achieved a year ago. It cited "one-offs and impairments on investments mainly in the first half of the year" as reason for the decrease.
Total gross written premiums came in at €70.7 billion in 2020, a slight increase compared to the previous year's €69.7 billion.
The company's combined ratio for 2020 improved to 89.1 percent from 92.6 percent seen in 2019.
Generali said its premiums in the property and casualty segment remained stable on equivalent terms.
The group had total assets under management equal to €664 billion in 2020, up 5.4 percent on the previous year.
Donnet commented: “For the second consecutive year, we have achieved the Group’s best ever operating result and, also thanks to the further growth of the dividend, we continue to create value for all of our stakeholders. We have entered the final year of our strategic plan and are well positioned to achieve all of the objectives of ‘Generali 2021’.
"I am very proud that in the critical moment of the crisis, Generali took immediate action with our Extraordinary International Fund and other high impact initiatives to support the communities and territories in which we operate."
In the period 2018-2020, the group made €6 billion of new green and sustainable investments, exceeding the strategic target of €4.5 billion by 2021 a year in advance. In 2020, Generali also collected over €16.9 billion in premiums from social and environmental products, an increase of 11.2 percent compared to 2019.
The insurer stated that it will continue with the strategy of rebalancing its life portfolio to further strengthen profitability and aim for a more efficient capital allocation in 2021.
In P&C, Generali’s objective is to maintain the upswing trend of premium income, combined with profitability in the mature insurance markets in which the group is present, and at the same time, strengthen its position in high growth potential markets by expanding its presence and offering.
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