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SAMPO PLC PRESS RELEASE 6 November 2019 at 9:35 am
Sampo’s insurance businesses continued their strong development
Sampo Group’s profit before taxes for January - September 2019 amounted to EUR 1,073 million compared to EUR 1,643 million a year earlier. The profit was impacted by the one-offs in Nordea and the EUR 155 million negative profit item resulting from the distribution of an extra dividend. The comparison figure contains a non-recurring profit item of EUR 197 million related to Mandatum Life’s co-operation agreement with Danske Bank.
- Low interest rate level creates challenges for investments but excluding that financial development was strong in insurance businesses. Premium income increased further in both P&C and life insurance, says Kari Stadigh, Group CEO and President.
Combined ratio for If improved further to 84.3 per cent in January–September 2019 from 85.8 per cent a year ago. Combined ratio for Topdanmark strengthened to 80.5 per cent compared to 82.7 per cent a year ago.
Other key figures for January–September 2019
Changes in Sampo’s solvency and view on expected dividends
Sampo plc distributed an extra dividend in the form of shares of Nordea in August. As a result, Sampo’s ownership in Nordea decreased to 19.87 per cent. The Finnish Supervisory Authority approved Sampo’s application for the termination of the conglomerate rules (FICO) on 21 October 2019. Henceforth, Sampo Group’s solvency is calculated only by Solvency II rules.
On 24 October 2019 Sampo announced a change in its view on expected dividends. The change is due to the increasingly difficult operating environment, with government bond yields expected to remain negative for some time to come, and Nordea’s new dividend policy. Sampo’s management expects to propose to the Board of Directors a dividend of EUR 2.10–2.30 per share for 2019, not including the extra dividend paid in the form of Nordea shares in August 2019. The Board will review the dividend policy in early February 2020.
Outlook for the rest of 2019
Sampo Group’s business areas are expected to report good operating results for 2019.
However, the marked-to-market results are, particularly in life insurance, highly dependent on capital market developments. The continuing low interest rate level also creates a challenging environment for reinvestment in fixed income instruments.
If is expected to reach a combined ratio of 84–86 per cent in 2019.
With regard to Topdanmark reference is made to the profit forecast model that the company publishes quarterly.
Nordea’s contribution to the Group’s profit is expected to be significant.
Sampo Group’s Interim Statement for January–September 2019 and the Supplementary Financial Information Package are available at www.sampo.com/result.
An English-language conference call for investors and analysts will be arranged at 4 pm Finnish time (2 pm UK time). Please call tel. +44 (0)333 300 0804, +46 (0)8 5664 2651, +1 855 8570 686 or +358 (0)9 8171 0310. The conference code is 50866649#. The conference call can also be followed live at www.sampo.com/result.
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The principal media