Operating profits decline at FBD

Insurance group increases gross written premiums to €175.9 million

FBD group chief executive Andrew Langford (left), and chairman Michael Berkery. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

FBD group chief executive Andrew Langford (left), and chairman Michael Berkery. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Tue, Aug 27, 2013, 07:45

Insurance group FBD reported a decline in operating profits this morning, from €28.1 million in the first half of 2012 to €24.1 million in the first six months of this year.

While the Irish Insurance market declined further in the first half of the year, albeit at a slower pace, FBD increased gross written premiums from €144.7 million to €175.9 million, with key strategic initiatives contributing to the outperformance.

However, the group said profit in the first half of 2013 was lower than the first half of last year primarily due to reduced returns in global investment markets.

Operating profit declined to €24.1 million for the first six months to the end of June, while profit before tax declined from €21.8 million to €19.1 million.

FBD’s financial services operations, which include life, pension and investment broking services, reported an operating profit of €2.2 million in a “tough operating environment”, down from €2.6 million in the first half of 2012.

The insurer generated underwriting profit of €7.7 million in the first half, down from €11.2 million in the first six months of last year.

The board approved an interim dividend payment of 15.75 cent per share, an increase of 29 per cent.

Group chief executive Andrew Langford said the board was confident that FBD will continue to outperform its peers in delivering superior returns to shareholders.

The group has predicted a full-year operating earnings per share of 145 to 155 cents, re-affirming its previous guidance.

Last year, the insurance group reported a 5.3 per cent increase in pre-tax profits to €52.9 million, as the group increased its market share to 12.5 per cent, its highest ever share, up from 12.2 per cent in 2011, and 7.5 per cent in 2000.