QBE announces profit boost, exec reshuffle

QBE announces profit boost, exec reshuffle | Insurance Business

QBE announces profit boost, exec reshuffle
QBE has announced a 30% boost in statutory net profit at its half year results.

The firm saw statutory net profit after tax hit $345m, compared with $265m last year, whilst adjusted net profit after tax rose 76% to $464m.

Gross written premium for the global business increased 3% whilst the Australian and New Zealand operations of the business saw a GWP rise of 5% on a constant currency basis to just over $2bn, compared to $1.86bn in the first half of 2016.

The local arm of the firm saw 5% premium rate increases on the back of rises in short-tail personal and commercial lines, the firm said, as policy retention remained “broadly stable”.

The combined operating ratio of the business rose to 95.3%, compared with 94.5% following a weaker underwriting result in the emerging markets sector of the business, which was relayed to the market in June.

The firm announced a host of changes within the emerging market sector to address the issue with David Fried, currently CEO of emerging markets, stepping down from the role as the sector will be split into two separate divisions for Asia Pacific and Latin America.

Current group chief risk officer, Jason Brown, will become CEO of Asia Pacific, whilst Carola Fratini, currently CEO of QBE’s Argentina business, will take on the role of Latin America CEO.

“A detailed review has been undertaken to determine the remediation activities required to improve underwriting performance in the second half of 2017 and beyond,” John Neal, QBE Group CEO said.

“In addition to the tightening of underwriting controls and discipline, improved pricing models are being introduced, enhanced reinsurance protections considered and cost reduction plans implemented.”

For the full year, the group is targeting “modest growth” in GWP, an upgrade from the previous “relatively stable” target thanks to better than expected top line growth in Australia, New Zealand and North America.

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