Friends Provident plc - Preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2008 (unaudited) Strong capital position; good progress on strategy

Friends Provident plc - Preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2008 (unaudited)
Strong capital position; good progress on strategy

Financial highlights

* Insurance Groups Directive (IGD) surplus remains strong, estimated at £0.85 billion at 31 December 2008 (31 December 2007: £1.3bn) and estimated at £0.8bn at the end of February 2009
* Final dividend of 2.6p per share bringing full year dividend per share to 3.9p*
* High quality of investments and focused strategy position business well to continue turnaround
* IFRS net asset value per share excluding goodwill of 77p (2007: 96p)
* EEV underlying profit up to £420 million (2007: £16m) on our established market-consistent approach
* IFRS underlying profit of £27 million (2007: £44m) before £217m
(2007: £90m) addition to corporate bond default reserves

Operating highlights

* International contribution from new business of £111 million (2007: £110m)
* UK business restructured to align operations to corporate and individual customer segments
* £25 million annualised cost savings at 31 December 2008, well on track to deliver £40 million of annualised savings in the UK by end of 2009

Trevor Matthews, chief executive officer, said:

“We are maintaining our capital strength, our prudent approach to accounting and our dividend policy, all of which position us well in the current conditions.

“The company is reorganised, the leadership team is strengthened, and operational momentum is building. We have taken significant costs out of the business, sharpening our competitive edge in the key markets we identified at the start of 2008.

“2009 will be a tough year for economies worldwide, but we will continue to enhance our product range and build a business primed to broaden our distribution and grow market share both in the UK and abroad.”

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