Operational result €115 million
On track to achieve our strategic ambitions
- Lower result in first half of 2022 due to:
- Lower investment income due to development of financial markets
- Lower result on Health activities due to increased healthcare costs
- Good result Non-Life despite high claims due to February storms; combined ratio further improved to 92.0%
- Strong growth in premium income of 6% (€1 billion) to €18.5 billion
- Concrete steps taken to achieve climate-neutral operations by 2030, climate-neutral investments by 2040 and climate-neutral products and services by 2050
- Intended acquisition of ABN AMRO PPI strengthens Centraal Beheer's position in the employer market for Retirement Services
- Solvency robust at 200%
Bianca Tetteroo, Chair of the Executive Board:
Today we present the results over the first half of 2022. A period in which a lot happened in the world around us. The war in Ukraine has been going on for almost six months and a solution is not expected any time soon. The economic conditions are challenging. The first half of the year there was high inflation, a rapid rise in interest rates on the capital markets and falling share prices. In addition, the pressure in the healthcare sector remains high due to Covid-19 catch-up care, the labour market is tight, and we increasingly face extreme weather conditions. All these circumstances also had an effect on our business operations and financial results in the first half of the year. In addition, further development of the financial markets, inflation and interest rates provide uncertainty for our financial results in the second half of the year.
Results first half year
The result for the first half of 2022 is €115 million. This is lower than the result for the same period last year (€362 million). Investment income is €170 million lower than in the first half of 2021 due to the development of the financial markets. In addition, there is a lower result on our health insurance business, partly due to higher healthcare costs as care is fully restarted and because there is no longer an additional contribution from the Covid-19 catastrophe scheme.
The underlying insurance result, on the other hand, is at a good level and is supported by broad portfolio growth, again showing commercial growth in Health, Non-Life, Retirement Services and our International activities. As a result, our premium income grew by more than €1 billion.
Portfolio growth, combined with lower operating expenses and a good underwriting result, helped us to absorb more than €100 million in claims (after reinsurance) from the February storms and further improved the combined ratio of our Property & Casualty business to 92.0%.
Pension & Life experienced a significantly lower investment result due to the effects of increased interest rates and lower share prices. In line with our strategy, no new insurance contracts are concluded in our pension portfolios and therefore the decrease in premium income is the result of the run-off of the portfolio. Cost reduction initiatives and earlier IT investments have resulted in cost reductions in line with our targets and decline of the portfolio.
In Retirement Services there is a lower result. Especially Achmea Bank reported a lower result due to rising interest rates, which had a negative impact on the interest margin and a lower valuation of part of the mortgage portfolio. Income of Syntrus Achmea Real Estate & Finance, Achmea Investment Management and Achmea Pension Services increased by €14 million, among others due to new pension fund clients and price development of real estate. Total assets under management at Achmea Investment Management and Syntrus Achmea Real Estate & Finance declined to €201 billion, despite the addition of several new pension funds, due to lower valuations as a result of increased interest and development of the financial markets.
At International, strong premium growth of 14% was realised. Despite this growth, the result decreased. In Greece and Slovakia, the result is lower due to higher claims through calamities and a lower contribution to health care. In addition, at Group level, we have made an impairment of the remaining intangible assets for our activities in Turkey given the economic developments and hyperinflation.
We are well on our way to realising our strategy ‘The Sum of Us’. Our solid capital position gives us room for continuous investment in growth and customer service, and in helping to solve societal issues. To achieve our goals, we operate as one Achmea. We will strengthen the synergies within the company, optimise our balance sheet, continue to invest in the development of our committed employees, and achieve economies of scale in the areas of data and technology, innovative solutions and indirect costs.
In addition to growth opportunities in Health and Non-Life, we see plenty of opportunities in Retirement Services. In early May, we announced the acquisition of ABN AMRO's premium pension institution. In doing so, we capitalise on the opportunities offered by the new pension agreement and to strengthen our position in the employer market with our Retirement Services. We support our institutional clients in the transition to the new pension system with both asset management solutions and pension services. With new, innovative products and solutions, we continue to improve services to our millions of clients. In addition, we are further expanding our international activities with a focus on organic growth in the direct distribution channels, additional targeted acquisitions and the roll-out of InShared in Germany.
Our position to realise our strategic ambitions is and will remain as strong as ever. Despite market developments, the Group's solvency remains robust at 200%. In terms of market position and customer satisfaction, we remain in the top tier, and we are also well regarded as an employer in various surveys. Employees and customers value our initiatives to make ourselves and society more sustainable.
Achmea stands for Sustainable Living Together
Together with our customers, Vereniging Achmea, Rabobank and other strategic partners, we work on solutions to societal challenges in the areas of health, living and working, mobility and income for today and tomorrow. This is how we create sustainable value for customers, employees, the company and society. We are doing this, for example, in the housing market by developing life-proof housing, such as the large De Nieuwe Sint Jacob residential complex in Amsterdam, which we opened in April. In twenty years' time, there will be twice as many people in the Netherlands aged 75 or over. To continue to meet the need for care and housing, customisation is a must. This requires about 500,000 new life-course resistant homes. Making homes life-course resistant can reduce the pressure on (informal) care and improve the flow on the housing market. From our expertise in real estate, health care and pensions, we work together with partners to find solutions.
Achmea has strong climate ambitions. We are on our way to a climate neutral business in 2030, climate neutral investments in 2040 and climate neutral products and services in 2050. The gross CO2 footprint of our business operations in the first half of 2022 amounts to 10,7 kton and is considerably lower than the target. In the first half year, Achmea improved its score on the Eerlijke Verzekeringswijzer (“Fair Insurance Guide”) to 7.4 and thus maintained its top-3 position. In the area of biodiversity, we are committed to investing in the environment in and around our premises, such as the Apeldoorn campus, and Achmea Investment Management actively promotes the preservation and improvement of biodiversity through its own investment funds.
Many thanks to our customers and employees
Although Covid-19 is unfortunately not yet behind us, we were fortunately able to go to the office more often in the past six months. It gives energy to meet each other more often in person again.
I am proud of all our employees for all their efforts in the past period. I am particularly proud of my colleagues who have put in a lot of extra hours in order to settle the more than 80,000 storm damage claims as quickly as possible. Of course, I would also like to thank our customers for their understanding when it sometimes took a bit longer to settle these claims and for their continued trust in our services.