Bermuda multi-line insurer Argus Group reported net earnings of $14.2m for the 2019 financial year, a satisfying result after the net loss of $18.6m recorded in the corresponding period in 2018.
The previous difficult financial year was attributed to operating under a backdrop of market uncertainty caused by global change and a low growth Bermuda economy. In particular, the company the loss was caused by the combination of a large number of major medical claims and the actions it took to complete the restructuring of the group’s balance sheet.
Argus said its return to profitability was underpinned by stability and strength across all three of its divisions: employee benefits; global property and casualty; and wealth management.
Alison Hill, Argus Group CEO, called it “a significant return to strength from 2018’s year of tough decisions.”
Hill said: “This year has seen us act strategically and decisively to enhance the long-term economics of our business. We have controlled the cost of our healthcare business in partnership with One Team Health, and are strengthening our international presence through the acquisition of FirstUnited Insurance Brokers in Malta.”
Argus agreed to acquire FirstUnited Insurance Brokers, a provider of insurance broking services to individuals and businesses in Malta, at the end of May.
Hospital financing reform created a particularly challenging environment for health renewals, Hill added, where premium rate increases were necessary for many clients to keep pace with global health cost inflation.
Hill said: “We continue to focus on putting our capital to best use, making responsible and judicious choices to further our strategic aims, whilst ensuring long-term sustainable shareholder value.” This includes investing in new technologies and finding new ways of doing business to improve services, she added.
Argus Group, Results, Insurance, Bermuda