Leadway Assurance Company Limited has announced a 20 per cent in gross premium written income from N39.0 billion in 2014 to N46.6 billion in 2015, this is largely attributable to the significant increase in premiums written under annuity business.
The presiding chairman and Director of the company, Jeremy Rowse, addressing shareholders at the 44th yearly general meeting held in Lagos, said net underwriting income also increased by 31 per cent from N31.1 billion in 2014 to N40.8 billion in 2015, due partly to the prior year’s premium written earned in the current year as well as a result of significant growth in the annuity book.
According to him, there was an increase in claims expenses in 2015 by 13 per cent from N12.7 billion in 2014 to N14.3 billion in 2015. This was attributed to annuity payments and higher claims paid under the general business segment. Overall, underwriting expenses increased from N3.4 billion in 2014 to N5 billion in 2015, an increase of 48 per cent. The business recorded a -531 per cent decrease in underwriting profit from N3 billion in 2014 to a loss of N12.9 billion in 2015 owing to growth in annuity reserves.
He said “despite the political risk, currency volatility and uncertainty in the global crude oil price, investment income increased by 33 percent from N7.4 billion in 2014 to N9.9 billion in 2015, translating to a significant increase in profit after tax for the year by 125 per cent from N2.8 billion in 2014 to N6.3 billion in 2015”.
The company’s assets, he said, recorded a 10 per cent growth from N100.5 billion in 2014 to N137.3 billion in 2015 following significant growth in retained earnings and increase in contingency reserves.
On the future outlook, Rowse said, “as we await the signing of the 2016 appropriation bill into law, we are hopeful that the economy would be restructured to tackle the myriads of socio-political, economic and infrastructural challenges facing the country and create room for insurance penetration which should increase insurance contribution to the GDP. On our part, we will maximize our resources to remain competitive in the face of softening rates and dawdling retail penetration.
“As we explore local and international opportunities with higher level of risk capital, we are creating room for strategic and foreign inward investment to boost our portfolio and to this end, I wish to inform you of the acquisition of 25 per cent shares in the share capital of your company by Swiss Re Direct Investment Company Limited. The acquisition became imperative following the exit of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the need to replace them with an investor of global brand repute coupled with our desire for robust capital base in preparedness for the future. At the appropriate time you will be required to pas specific resolutions approving the transaction in the course of the meeting.
We are resilient and undeterred to use the evolving business and marketing channels to deepen insurance penetration towards rapid increase of our market share and overall contribution to our country’s GDP. We will harness our strength and experience to remain in the premier of the insurance industry.
Source: Guardian News