Ljubljana, 22 November (STA) - The insurance group Sava reported on Friday a net profit of EUR 37.7 million for the first nine months of the year, a 29.3% increase driven by high premium growth and improved cost-efficiency. Operating revenue was up 8.7% to EUR 427.5 million.
The group wrote EUR 471.1 million in non-life premiums, up 9.5% year on year, mostly on account of 10.9% growth in gross premiums written in the non-life insurance business in Slovenia and 20.3% growth in the non-life insurance business outside of Slovenia.
More moderate growth figures were recorded for the reinsurance business (3.6%), life insurance outside of Slovenia (7.4%) and life insurance in Slovenia (0.4%).
In the first three quarters of the year, Sava wrote 84.9% of its full-year premium target for 2019.
The company added the group's performance had also been bolstered by better cost-efficiency, with a 1.5-point year-on-year improvement in the expense ratio of insurance business, primarily reflecting faster growth in premiums over expenses.
Meanwhile, "the net incurred loss ratio was somewhat larger than planned, mainly due to the impact of higher net claims incurred by the group's non-life insurers".
Primary insurance saw an increased claims burden in Croatia, where claims rose in motor third-party liability and in motor casco business, as well as owing to the integration of the Ergo non-life insurer into the group, the business reports says.
Sava said that in addition to achieving significant organic growth, it remained committed to its strategy of acquisitions-based growth.
In October 2019, Sava issued subordinated bonds worth a total of EUR 75 million, with a scheduled maturity of 2039. It said this would provide the group even more flexibility to pursue growth.