FWD Group kicks off 2024 with robust growth and strategic expansions

Report unveiled each segment’s performance for Q1 2024

FWD Group kicks off 2024 with robust growth and strategic expansions

Insurance News

By Roxanne Libatique

FWD Group Holdings Limited has released its first-quarter business results for the period ending March 31 (Q1 2024).

The insurer reported a value of new business (VNB) of US$215 million, reflecting a 17% increase from the first quarter of 2023 (Q1 2023). New business sales rose to US$460 million, a 10% uptick compared to the previous year.

In Southeast Asia, FWD Group expanded its presence by acquiring a 70% stake in FWD Takaful Berhad in Malaysia and increasing its investment in BRI Life in Indonesia to 44%.

The company also issued US$900 million in five-year subordinated notes at an 8.4% interest rate, maturing in 2029, to refinance debt set to mature in July 2024. Additionally, it secured a US$685 million three-year revolving credit facility in February 2024, increasing its total undrawn committed credit facilities to $1.185 billion.

“We’ve made a solid start to 2024 as we continue to build scale in our business, deepening FWD’s presence to serve customers across our 10 markets in Asia,” said Huynh Thanh Phong, group chief executive officer and executive director of FWD Group. “We were also pleased to close our US$900 million refinancing during the quarter, which further extends our bond maturity profile. Our balance sheet strength reflects our ongoing strategy execution and disciplined approach to growth, on the path to sustainable profitability.”

Performance of FWD Group’s segments for Q1 2024

All four of FWD Group’s reporting segments – Hong Kong SAR & Macau SAR, Thailand & Cambodia, Japan, and emerging markets – showed growth in new business sales and VNB.

The Hong Kong SAR & Macau SAR segment benefitted from the return of Mainland Chinese visitors.

In Thailand, the focus on higher-margin products drove growth in new business sales and VNB. Japan and emerging markets also recorded strong VNB growth.

As highlighted in FWD Group’s 2023 full-year results in March, actuarial assumptions were updated to account for the latest post-COVID experiences and market disruptions in Vietnam.

The first-quarter 2024 results are based on these updated assumptions and are not directly comparable to the first-quarter 2023 figures.

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