Beazley share price up as insurer reveals a boost to profits for the year ended December 2015 and a planned move to London from Ireland

 
Hayley Kirton
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The insurer pulled in profit before tax of $284m for the year ended 2015 (Source: Getty)

Beazley today revealed it was eyeing a return to the UK from lower-tax jurisdiction Ireland as it reported a boost to its profits for the year.

The insurer announced that it had made profit before tax of $284m (£194.7m) for the year ended December 2015, which is up eight per cent from $261.9m the year before.

"Beazley increased both premiums and profits in 2015, delivering excellent returns for shareholders despite low investment returns and declining premium rates," said Andrew Horton, chief executive at Beazley.

Horton added: "I’m also delighted that we have completed the preparations to return our head office to London and we will be putting this to a shareholder vote in March."

Beazley also revealed a boost to its gross premiums written, which rose three per cent to $2.1bn from $2bn.

Share price in the company, which is in the FTSE 250, was trading up one per cent at 365p just before 3pm London time.

In his statement, Beazley chairman Dennis Holt noted that the company had been considering the feasibility of a return to the UK during 2015, adding that the board believed it would help the company operate more efficiently.

However, Holt also warned in his statement that he expected the tough market conditions the company had experience during 2015 would continue into 2016.

Holt also revealed that Horton, who is now in his eighth year as the company's chief executive, would be taking a short break from his role in March and April this year.

Neil Maidment, the company's underwriting chief, will serve as interim chief executive during Horton's absence.

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