Tuesday 18 June 2019

Aviva Ireland profits rise 15pc to €113m as chief calls for reduction in personal injury claims costs

John Quinlan, Aviva ceo
John Quinlan, Aviva ceo
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

Profits at Aviva Ireland have risen 15pc year-on-year to €113m, from €99m in 2017, across its life and general insurance businesses.

In its full year financial results, the group reported that this is its fourth consecutive year of double-digit percentage growth across both verticals.

Despite "more challenging market conditions", profits at the general insurance business rose 4pc to €63m on an annual basis.

"Our combined operating ratio, a key measure of profitability, remains robust at 91.5pc and in line with 2017. Net written premiums declined marginally by 2pc to €485m in an increasingly competitive market," said chief executive officer (ceo) John Quinlan.

Last June, Aviva acquired Friends First and the group said that the integration into its life business "is progressing well" and has boosted the profits in this vertical.

Profits across the life business jumped 31pc to €50m, €38m in 2017, with the value of new business premiums rising 14pc to €1.367m. 

As regards the final recommendations of the Personal Injuries Commission, Mr Quinlan said they were supported by Aviva and the group wrote to its customers encouraging them to petition for its proposals to be implemented quickly.

"We now need further government led progress in reducing personal injury claims costs to enable insurers to bring motor insurance premiums down to more sustainable long-term levels," he said.

"The high levels of personal injury awards have also been a factor in the increased cost of commercial insurance for our business customers and further reforms are required here to reduce claims costs." 

Furthermore, he said that the group was supportive of measures to increase pensions coverage among those in full-time employment from its current level of less than 50pc.

Preparing for post-Brexit, Aviva completed the establishment of a separate Irish legal entity last month for the general insurance business which completed the authorisation process for both its life and general insurance businesses to be regulated in Ireland.

"This allows us to continue to protect our customers and serve their best interests in Ireland post-Brexit," said Mr Quinlan.

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