Insurer Prudential posts rising sales, helped by Asia
British insurance giant Prudential said on Wednesday that sales soared in the third quarter, boosted by activity in Asia, and promised to deliver "strong growth and generate strong returns" this year.
Sales rocketed by more than 17 percent to 809 million pounds in the three months to September, compared with 689 million in the same part of 2009, Prudential said in a trading update.
The impressive result beat market expectations of 773 million pounds and was delivered despite Prudential's high-profile, audacious but unsuccessful bid for AIG's Asian division AIA.
"The group's performance in the third quarter has been strong," said chief executive Tidjane Thiam, who had faced criticism from some shareholders over the 35.5-billion-dollar (27.5-billion-euro) AIA bid that collapsed in June.
"Prudential continues to grow fast and profitably," he added in the statement which made no mention of the failed AIA transaction.
Thiam added that the group was poised to deliver more strong results this year.
"We remain well positioned to deliver strong growth and generate strong returns for our shareholders, based on the group's proven strategy, our brand and market position in the countries where we choose to operate, the power of our distribution and the quality of our teams," he said.
Following the failure of the AIA deal, Prudential has promised to focus on organic growth -- particularly at its own Asian business.
"South east Asia, with its high rates of GDP growth, saving habits and low penetration of insurance products, remains the most attractive long-term opportunity in our industry and the primary focus for our growth and investment," added Thiam.
"This opportunity, supported by our strong position in the US, our focused business in the UK and market leading asset management businesses, means we view our future with confidence and believe that we will continue to outperform our competitors in our chosen markets."
© 2010 AFP