Canadian Underwriter

Groupe Promutuel posts $36 million profit

April 10, 2005   by Canadian Underwriter

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Groupe Promutuel, a group of Quebec-based mutual insurers, says its members posted combined net earnings of $36 million for 2004.
Premium volume grew by 11% last year to reach $456 million, and member equity rose from $291 million in 2003 to $327 million in 2004. The group had set a target of reaching $300 million in member equity in 2005, so is ahead of schedule in this regard.
Other released financial information includes $239 million in compensation paid out in 2004, with a claims ratio of 57%. Investment earnings rose to $23.6 million in 2004 from $21.4 million in 2003.
And the group also produced a 13.5% increase in total assets to $849 million last year.
The strong performance in 2004 is the result of the higher investment income and reduce claims ratio, but also new product offerings, including the launch of the “Promutuel enhanced performance account” a savings account for businesses.
But the group has also had its struggles this year, admits chairman Adrien Viens, who says differences of opinion have arisen which are forcing the organization to rethink its very structure. “I have the heartfelt conviction that with hard work, goodwill, and confidence in our potential, the values of mutual aid that led to our creation will be fully reaffirmed and our group will once again be strong and united,” Viens says of his optimism accord will be reached within the group’s ranks.
Among the strategies for 2005 are a new advertising campaign which began in March. At the same time, a more aggressive target for member equity has been set, notes general manager Claude Robitaille. “We are very confident of meeting and even surpassing the $500 million mark in premium volume between now and the end of 2005.”

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