Excellent 2016 results due to balanced portfolio and disciplined underwriting
- Operating result exceeds €461 million (+4.5%)
- Profit after tax (+19%) confirms extremely good level of profitability
- Best-in-class Combined Ratio further improved to 89.5% (-0.6 p.p.)
- Strong growth in P&C business (+5.8%) and disciplined approach to Life business
Venice/Prague - The Generali Group’s operations in Central and Eastern Europe continued its excellent development in 2016. The operating result of Prague based Generali CEE Holding reached €461 million, up by 4.5%, especially thanks to a balanced portfolio and disciplined underwriting. The profit after tax attributable to the equity holders of the parent amounted to €314 million, showing a 19% increase compared to 2015, and hence confirming the extremely good level of profitability of Generali CEE Holding in its core business and markets.
The Chief Executive Officer of Generali CEE Holding, Luciano Cirinà, commented: “Our results confirm our strong position as one of the region’s top insurers. We are proud to contribute 10% to the Generali Group’s operating result. With our disciplined and effective approach to our core insurance business we successfully followed the Group’s strategy accelerating the shift to more Property & Casualty (P&C) business and exercising a very selective underwriting policy also in the Life business.”
These outstanding results were supported especially by the positive development in the P&C business with a Combined Ratio of only 89.5% - the best within the Generali Group worldwide. In the P&C segment premiums grew by 5.8% to €2,047 million contributing 9.8% to the Group’s total P&C business. The improvement in the premium income emerged entirely from the motor insurance segment.
In the Life segment our more selective underwriting policy continued, focusing on boosting insurance business profitability. As a result of this strategic approach Life gross written premiums of the CEE countries decreased to €986 million (-7.9%) but with a remarkable growth of 7.1% in the protection business, in line with the Group’s disciplined product strategy.
Total gross written premiums amounted to €3,033 million (+0.9%) with a share of 67% from the P&C business and 33% from Life insurance.
In terms of volumes, the main insurance markets in Central and Eastern Europe are the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia. These top four markets contribute more than 80% of Generali CEE Holding’s business in this region.
The Czech Republic is the region’s most significant financial market for Generali CEE Holding contributing more than 40% to the Group’s volume in Central and Eastern Europe. With a market share of 30.1% the Generali ranks second in this country, Ceska pojistovna – with a history of 190 years – is the local insurance market leader. Gross written premiums of the Group confirmed solid at 1.372 million (-2.9%) with a 2% growth in P&C.
The Hungarian Generali Group – market leader with 14.4% market share - confirmed its long lasting stability while achieving growth both in Life and in the P&C insurance segments. The group realised 4.8% growth of gross written premiums amounting to €427 million in total. In the P&C segment gross written premiums increased by 4.5% to €283 million and in Life by 5.5% to €144 million.
In Poland Generali focused its activities on improving profitability and balancing the product mix. Following this disciplined strategic approach the Polish business reported €498 million (-10.7%) gross written premiums in 2016.
In Slovakia gross written premiums experienced an increase in both insurance segments. In P&C it grew by remarkable 9.7% to €121 million and in Life insurance by 4.7% to €88 million. Total gross written premiums amounted to €209 million. Generali kept the third position on the market with a share of 9.3%.
The contribution of the other markets – Serbia, Romania, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Croatia and Montenegro – has also improved during the last years.
Generali Serbia is the largest privately-owned insurance company in Serbia. The company is the market leader in Life and Health insurance. In 2016, gross written premiums amounted to €161 million. Life insurance premiums increased by 5.7% to €57 million and P&C premiums by 6.9% to €104 million.
In Romania gross written premiums reached €143 million in 2016, representing an increase of 33% compared to 2015 – mainly a result of the extraordinary growth in the motor business.
Generali is the biggest foreign insurance company in Slovenia. Gross written premiums amounted to €92 million – an increase of a 2.7% with significant growth in Life insurance (+6.6%).
In Bulgaria the Group successfully completed the merger of Generali Bulgaria and VICTORIA ZAD in 2016. In 2016, Generali Bulgaria recorded gross written premiums of €73 million.
In Croatia Generali is the only insurance company on the market growing for eight years in a row. In 2016 gross written premiums recorded an increase by 4.1% to €66 million growing in both the Life and the P&C business.
Generali Montenegro is the 3rd largest insurance company operating in the P&C business. Its market share in this segment was 16.5% with gross written premiums of almost €11 million (+6.7%).
More than 12,000 employees are taking care of around 11 million customers insured by Generali Group companies in the CEE region.