Great Eastern Holdings reports resilient performance amid market challenges

Report highlights key financial metrics and commitment to sustainability

Great Eastern Holdings reports resilient performance amid market challenges

Insurance News

By Roxanne Libatique

Great Eastern Holdings Limited has announced its financial outcomes for the year ended Dec. 31 (FY23).

The report highlighted key financial metrics, including total weighted new sales, new business embedded value, and profit attributable to shareholders.

Key figures

For the fiscal year 2023, Great Eastern's total weighted new sales fell by 12% to $1,659.4 million from $1,887.3 million in the previous year, driven by a decrease in single premium sales in Singapore.

The shift in consumer preference towards shorter-term interest-yielding investments, due to an inverted SGD yield curve, contributed to this decline. However, this was partially offset by an increase in regular premium sales, particularly in protection and whole life plans.

New business embedded value also experienced a decrease of 11%, ending the year at $762.1 million compared to $860.4 million in 2022, reflecting the overall lower sales volume.

Conversely, profit attributable to shareholders saw a significant increase, rising 27% to $774.6 million from $610.0 million in the previous year. This growth was attributed to favourable investment performance in the Singapore Life business and the shareholders' fund, despite higher medical claims impacting profitability.

The company also reported an increase in its customer base, adding over 400,000 new customers during the fiscal year, underlining the resilience and strength of its core business lines.

Regulatory capital

Regarding regulatory capital, the capital adequacy ratios of Great Eastern's insurance subsidiaries remained strong and well above the minimum regulatory requirements. The adoption of the new SFRS (I) 17 Insurance Contracts standard, which commenced on Jan. 1, 2023, did not affect these ratios.


The board of directors recommended a final one-tier tax-exempt dividend of 40 cents per ordinary share, scheduled for payment on May 17, 2024. Together with an interim dividend paid in August 2023, the total dividend for the fiscal year amounted to 75 cents per ordinary share, representing a payout ratio of approximately 46%.

Commitment to net zero

In its latest financial report, Great Eastern reaffirmed its commitment to sustainability, with a commitment to achieving net zero by 2050. This includes transitioning through innovative insurance solutions and sustainable investments. Further details will be disclosed in the 2023 Sustainability Report, expected in April 2024.

“Despite the operating climate remaining challenging in 2023, we stayed focused on our core strategies of improving customer experience and developing new products to meet the evolving wealth and protection needs of our customers across the region,” said Great Eastern CEO Khor Hock Seng. “In all the markets in which we operate, we continued to enhance our customer's experiences through the re-designing of customer journeys, leveraging our digitalisation and data analytics capability.”

Looking ahead, Great Eastern plans to further enhance customer experience and service levels through digitalisation and analytics, positioning the company for continued growth and long-term value for shareholders.

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