Prudential boosted by double-digit sales growth in six southeast Asian markets
Profit from new business up 12 per cent to £1.95bn in nine months to September 30th
Prudential has more than doubled in London trading since 2009. Photograph: Miles Willis/Getty Images
Prudential, the UK’s biggest insurer by market value, posted better than expected new business profit, boosted by “double-digit” sales growth in six southeast Asian markets.
The shares climbed. Profit from new business rose 12 per cent to £1.95 billion in the nine months to September 30th, the London-based insurer said yesterday. That beat the £1.9 billion estimate of 18 analysts surveyed by the company. New business profit in Asia jumped 20 per cent, while sales in the region increased 15 per cent. “We remain on track to achieve our 2013 growth and cash objectives,” said chief executive Tidjane Thiam in a conference call with reporters in London.
“The central point for Prudential is the long-term structural trends in Asia remain intact.”
Prudential, which gets almost half its revenue from Asia, has more than doubled in London trading since Mr Thiam took charge in 2009, as markets rebounded after the financial crisis and the insurer expanded into Asia.
The stock rose 1.9 per cent to 1,266 pence, its biggest gain since October 18th.
The company said its rise in sales in Asia has been broad-based as it reported an increase of at least 10 per cent in its “sweet-spot markets”, including Hong Kong. It also said it remains on target to achieve its last Asian-growth objective of doubling 2009 new business profit to £1.4 billion by the end of this year. Sales for the nine months rose 6 per cent to £3.27 billion, in line with the £3.26 billion average analyst estimate in the survey.
Sales in its US business, climbed 6 per cent to £1.2 billion, while the UK fell 12 per cent to £540 million. Mr Thiam said Prudential’s investment unit provided a “huge contribution” to earnings with MandG reporting net inflows of £8.9 billion in the nine-month period. Third-party funds under management climbed 19 per cent to a record £124 billion pounds from the year-earlier period. – (Bloomberg)