Daily Insurance Industry News
Daily Insurance Industry News
Thursday 18th of October 2018
April 28, 2009

Sales dive 40% for Friends Provident

by Gill Montia

Story link: Sales dive 40% for Friends Provident

Friends Provident recorded a 40% fall in sales during the first quarter of 2009, to £147.9 million.

The insurer attributed the decline to a “new strategy and a tough economic environment”, adding that UK individual protection sales strengthened in March but remained 8% lower than during the final quarter of 2008 because of challenging housing market conditions.

The group described its sales of new group pension schemes as “resuming well” adding that “overall sales of £72 million reflect the impact of economic conditions on new business from existing schemes.”

Sales at Friends’ international division fell 11% on the previous quarter to £37 million; developing a presence in the Hong Kong market proved to be slow going.

The firm’s capital cushion shrank to £0.8 billion, down from £0.85 billion at the end of December.

On a brighter note, Friends has secured (in principle) an agreement to provide protection products for Tesco Personal Finance.

Commenting on the results, the insurer’s chief executive, Trevor Matthews, said: “Our capital position is strong, despite further adverse movements in credit markets this year, and our reserves for corporate bond defaults are the most prudent among our peer group.

We are focused on improving the cash characteristics of our business, with further good progress on our cost reduction programme. I am confident that the actions we are taking will stand Friends Provident in good stead for the future.”


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