18 November 2022
Nine-month results for 2022: Group achieves net profit of €46.5m, 77.5% of 2022 full-year target
Pursuant to the rules of the Ljubljana Stock Exchange d.d., Ljubljana and the Market in Financial Instruments Act, Sava Re d.d., Dunajska 56, Ljubljana makes the following announcement:
At its 17th session, the Sava Re supervisory board was presented with the unaudited financial results of the Sava Insurance Group and Sava Re for January–September 2022.
The Sava Insurance Group generated a net profit of EUR 46.5 million in the first nine months of 2022, reaching 77.5% of its annual target. Because of the expected rise to pre-pandemic levels in motor claim frequency combined with surging inflation, pushing up claim amounts as well as claims provisions, net profit – as anticipated – is 18.8% below the same period in 2021. It is also due to the negative effect of EUR 6.9 million from measurement of investments, mainly debt securities, at fair value through profit or loss. Compared to 2019 (the last year comparable in terms of claim frequency), profit increased by 23.4%, which demonstrates the Group’s underlying strength, despite the current challenging financial and geopolitical environment.
The Group also remains well on track to meet its volume targets, as operating revenue of EUR 558.0 million reached 79.7% of the 2022 target. The largest contributions to above-target revenue growth came from reinsurance operations and non-life business sourced both in Slovenia and abroad. Operating revenue was up 1.7% year-on-year, with a notable 5.2% increase in gross premiums written.
The combined ratio of 91.9% also remained within the Group’s target range – despite the weaker claims experience in the Slovenian non-life segment – thanks to better-than-planned revenue growth and a better-than-planned expense ratio.
The situation in financial markets led to a decline in the value of the Group’s assets and equity, yet annualised return on equity of 12.3% (even when disregarding the fair value reserve) remained above the target return on equity set in the Group’s strategic plan.
Faster growth in gross premiums written
In the first nine months of the year, the Group wrote EUR 608.3 million in gross premiums, up 5.2% year-on-year, further boosting the volume of business compared to the first six months of the year, when premium volume grew by 4.5%. Due to its size, the largest contributor to the year-on-year volume increase was the Slovenian non-life segment, which grew by 6.3%. The international non-life and life segments, however, also grew significantly, by 18.4% and 19.3%, respectively. The growth in gross non-life premiums (both in Slovenia and abroad) was mainly driven by the motor business, where more policies were sold and average premiums were higher. Gross premiums also strengthened in the reinsurance business, up 5.3%, with a full 13.3% increase in the non-proportional business.
Cost-effectiveness within the planned range
The net expense ratio of 28.5% is better than planned for the full year, mainly in the Slovenian part of the non-life and life segments, as revenues were higher and expenses lower than planned for the period. The net expense ratio rose slightly compared to the same period last year, driven by the payout of a cost-of-living bonus to employees, IT costs, and various other price increases.
Investment portfolio still affected by volatile financial market conditions
Despite a temporary improvement in July, financial market conditions remained challenging in the third quarter, resulting in an additional decline in the investment portfolio to EUR 1,426.2 million. Eroded by the expenses on assets valued at fair value through profit or loss, the investment return was 1.3%, slightly lower than planned. The Group is also successfully implementing its sustainability investment strategy, with the share of ESG investments in the portfolio increasing from 11.9% at the end of the year to 14.7% at the end of the third quarter.
Digital transformation & placing the customer at the centre
The Group continued to upgrade and deploy digital customer solutions and optimise the customer experience. The SavaNet portal has seen several improvements based on customer requests and ideas. In the following period, the portal will be upgraded with more Group companies.
Information technology initiatives and improvements
In the third quarter, the Group’s IT activities mainly focused on security. The Group’s updated security policy was adopted, and a security patch management system was implemented. The Group also started revising its own cyber incident response plan to align it with the national cyber incident response plan.
In August, two delegated regulations entered into force. Documents and guidance were issued to meet regulatory requirements, and relevant information was prepared for customers on sustainability factors in the insurance product offering.
In the third quarter, the Sava Insurance Group continued to meet or exceed the targets of the current strategy period, which ends this year. The management board believes that the targets set for the year, as well as for the strategy period, will be met, subject to no additional materially adverse economic or catastrophic events. The expected results will thus provide a solid foundation to build on in the new strategy period, for which preparations are well underway.
The documents Unaudited Financial Report of the Sava Insurance Group and Financial Statements of Sava Re d.d. for the Nine Months to 30 September 2022 and the Presentation of Unaudited Results of the Sava Insurance Group for 1–9/2022 are attached hereto.
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