The local unit of the third most valuable Asia-based insurer – AIA Insurance Lanka PLC Group (AIA) – posted a net profit of Rs.174.2 million for the quarter ended December 31, 2015 (4Q15), up 26 percent from a year ago, as the life insurer saw its premiums and the investment incomes rising while the claims remaining low, the interim results showed.
The earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter rose to Rs.5.66 from Rs.4.49.
However, the group’s net profit shot up to Rs.1.22 billion with the one-off gain on disposal of its general insurance unit.
The group in October 2015 diversified its fully-owned subsidiary, AIA General Insurance Lanka Limited, to Janashakthi Insurance PLC for a consideration of Rs.3.2 billion. This resulted in a gain of Rs.1.27 billion.
AIA General Insurance Lanka Limited incurred a loss of Rs.78.8 million up to the date of the divestiture, turning from a net profit of Rs.89.6 million posted for the financial year ended December 31, 2014. With the sale of its general insurance unit, the life insurer will consolidate its position in the Sri Lankan market, which has the lowest life insurance penetration in the region.
The insurer however is yet to reveal what it will be doing with the pile of cash resulted from the sale, which is now parked in financial investments.
The top line measured by the gross written premium (GWP) rose by 22.5 percent year-on-year (YoY) to Rs.2.34 billion while the investment income rose by 16.1 percent YoY to Rs.1.05 billion.
The group paid Rs.1.44 billion as gross claims and benefits during the quarter, compared with Rs.1.54 billion paid a year ago.
Meanwhile, for the financial year ended December 31, 2015 the group posted a net profit of Rs.303.2 million (EPS of Rs.9.86), up 15.3 percent. The net profit of the group with the profit from discontinued operations rose to Rs.1.19 billion.
The GWP has increased by 16 percent to Rs.8.43 billion while the investment income rose 4.9 percent to Rs.3.89 billion.
The claims and benefits paid during the year declined by Rs.1.91 billion to Rs.4.94 billion.
As of December 31, 2015, the AIA group held a 97.16 percent stake in AIA Insurance Lanka PLC, while the public shareholding was 2.84 percent.
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