Tuesday 20 February 2018

Liberty generated €224m in first full year of operations

Gordon Deegan

LIBERTY Insurance last year returned to profit to record pre-tax profits of €20.1m.

Boston-based Liberty Insurance assumed the former business of Quinn Insurance two years ago in partnership with Irish Bank Resolution Corporation.

The insurer paid €1m a year to be sponsor of 'The Late Late Show' but opted not to renew the deal this year, with Skybroadband now sponsoring the show.

New accounts show that Liberty Insurance, in its first full year of operation, generated total income of €224m.

This compared to an income of €27.5m for the period between November 11 and December 31 2011.

The figures show that the firm -- which provides motor, property and liability insurance -- recorded an operating loss of €1.2m.

According to the directors' report, "this has been the first full year of trading for the company and not unexpectedly, the performance of the business has been challenged".

However, investment income totalling €28m, unrealised gains on investment totalling €37m and other income of €10.9 contributed to the firm's pre-tax profit. The figures show that net premiums written last year totalled €162.2m, with claims net of re-insurance amounting to €161m.

The firm's operating expenses of €64.2m included acquisition costs of €14.3m. The firm's total assets at the end of December last totalled €1.19bn

The business -- in late 2012 -- restructured, seeking 285 redundancies, and the directors' report states that the number seeking voluntary redundancy was higher, with the firm also imposing "a small number of compulsory redundancies in order to ensure that an effective re-organisational structure was in place".

The directors state that their primary objective for 2013 is to build on the initial foundation put in place in 2012 with a continued focus on enhancing technical expertise to improve underwriting performance

"This, in conjunction with the entry to Northern Ireland and Great Britain markets, will allow the company to position itself to become a significant presence in the Irish insurance market, and to develop profitably niches in the competitive UK markets," the directors add.

The profit last year takes account of non-cash depreciation costs totalling €7.2m

Emoluments to directors last year totalled €489,000. The numbers employed by the firm last year reduced only marginally from 1,477 to 1,457 with 1,213 in sales, claims and others with 244 in administration.

Irish Independent

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