Specialist insurance group Beazley Plc has suffered a major blow in its full-year results for 2020.
From a pre-tax profit of $267.7 million in 2019, Beazley posted a loss before tax worth $50.4 million this time around. The 250% plunge came despite the growth in Beazley’s gross written premium (GWP) from 2019’s $3 billion to the latest GWP of $3.6 billion.
Earnings per share for the past year, meanwhile, fell 119%. Additionally, Beazley’s board decided not to declare a dividend at the end of 2020.
According to the insurer, its combined ratio of 109% was “heavily impacted” by the volume of claims related to COVID-19 in what was described as an unprecedented year. Maintaining his optimism, though, is Beazley chief executive Andrew Horton.
“Beazley’s gross premiums written increased by 19% to $3,563.8 million, supported by rate rises across most of our divisions,” noted Horton. “We also achieved a strong investment income in the face of volatile conditions.
“I am very positive about the year ahead. We have the capital strength to support our growth plans and look forward to a continued favourable rate environment and expansion of our specialist products globally. I am confident we can return to paying dividends during the course of 2021.”