FBD reports massive increase in operating profits

FBD Holdings, one of the largest providers of property and casualty, life, commercial, and health insurance in Ireland, has announced its preliminary results for the year to December 2003.

FBD Holdings, one of the largest providers of property and casualty, life, commercial, and health insurance in Ireland, has announced its preliminary results for the year to December 2003.

Operating profit amounted to €110.5m compared to €37.5m for 2002, resulting in an operating EPS of 227.5 cent, up from 75.34 cent in 2002.

The Board recommended a final dividend of 17 cent, to give a total dividend for the year of 27.60 cent, amounting to a 25.5% increase.

Commenting on the results, Philip Fitzsimons, Chief Executive, stated: "2003 was a very good year for FBD shareholders and FBD customers.

"The underwriting loss trend of previous years was reversed and the turnaround to profit enabled significant premium reductions to be given to a wide range of policyholders."

He said that based on the results, customers could anticipate further premium savings.

All of the Group's business divisions, namely, insurance underwriting, financial services and property/leisure, delivered improved performances in 2003, with FBD Insurance producing particularly strong results in the period.

Gross written premium in 2003 amounted to €368.6m, an increase of 13.1%, entirely attributable to new policies written, which the group said more than offset the premium reductions which had been implemented across a wide range of covers in the course of the year.

Operating profits in the Group's property and hotel/leisure division amounted to €8.9m (€12.6m) boosted by sales of the the Los Altos apartments development at La Cala Resort in Mijas, Spain.

FBD Brokers, Abbey Finance, FBD Securities, FBD Life and FBD IFSC performed to expectations, contributing operating profits of £3.3m (€4.2m.).

Total assets at year end amounted to £1.087m (€1,250m), and ordinary shareholders' funds amounted to £209m (€290m).

FBD Holdings said it is confident it will maintain good growth momentum in all its business activities this year and the years ahead, and is on course to achieve our targets and objectives

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