VIG increases premiums and earns more | Insurance | 08/18/2022

VIG reports a significant increase in business during the first half of the year. Written premiums rose 11.6 percent in the first half of 2021 to a good €6.4 billion, not counting Eastern European carriers recently acquired from Dutch insurance company Aegon.

The good development is mainly due to the non-life business, as a company press release shows. General property insurance proved to be the king of premium growth, rising 15.2 per cent to €3.3bn. In addition, there is civil liability for motor vehicles, which grew by 20.3 percent to 975.2 million euros, and all-risk motor vehicle insurance with an increase of 11.1 percent to 787 .5 million euros. Health insurance also developed strongly with almost twelve percent to 411.8 million euros.

Life with less dynamic
Momentum was weakest in the large area of ​​life insurance with regular premium payments, which grew 4.1 percent to 1.4 billion euros. Single premium life insurance accounts for 485.4 million euros (+8.9 percent).

As far as individual markets are concerned, according to the broadcast, the Czech Republic was the most important for growth: here, VIG achieved premium increases of 17 percent to €1.1 billion. In the “extended CEE region” collection segment, growth was even stronger at 20.3 percent to EUR 1.7 billion, with Romania and the Baltic States in particular posting high premium growth. The largest single market, Austria, grew 4.2 percent to almost 2.4 billion euros.

Earnings Rise Despite Russia Cautions
A clear advantage can also be seen in earnings: despite the provisions made in the first quarter of 2022 due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, there is a net result of 202.3 million euros, which is 8.6 percent. cent more than in the first half of the first quarter. of 2021. Earnings before tax increased by 10.3 percent to EUR 277.3 million. Provisions had been made for “more than three-quarters of the VIG Group’s approximately €165 million exposure to Russian corporate and government bonds.”

However, the financial result, offsetting income and expenses from capital investments, shows the market shocks caused by the Russian war of aggression: here is a drop of a good ten percent. At the same time, the group managed to reduce its expenses. Both a lower cost and loss ratio led to a significant improvement in the combined ratio to 94.3 percent compared to the prior year (95.2 percent). The development is better than expected by analysts, according to data from “Bloomberg”.

Expansion inside and outside the EU
Due to the uncertainties caused by the Russian war against Ukraine, the VIG management does not want to make a forecast for the whole of the year. However, one seems “capable of handling challenges well”. Positive operating performance is expected in 2022.

The expansion strategy in Eastern Europe and beyond remains important. In Hungary, where the state approved the acquisition of the Aegon company in March, VIG could become the market leader from 2022. Before that, the goal was to be in the top three in Hungary by the end of 2025. Aegon has also already been closed in Turkey. All permissions have been applied for the acquisition of Aegon’s remaining Eastern European business with companies in Poland and Romania. Approval from local authorities is still pending. (eml)

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