British insurance giant Aviva today said it is on track to meet its financial targets after its sales increased by 5 per cent to £2bn, on the back of strong trading in the UK and Canada.
The London insurer said it had brought in an extra 100,000 UK customers over the previous year brining its total up to 15.4m.
The firm said its UK & Ireland sales increased 2 per cent to £8.4bn, as its general insurance sales increased 5 per cent to £2.1bn.
Aviva said that storms Dudley, Eunice, and Franklin in February cost it £70m as a return to more normal claims frequency also increased its costs.
The insurance giant also said its dividend guidance remains unchanged, as it vowed to pay out £870m in 2022 and £915m in 2023 at rates of 31p and 32.5p a share.
The firm also said it cut costs by 3 per cent from £705m in the first quarter of 2021 to £683m in the first quarter of 2022.
The update comes after Aviva set out a raft of financial targets in response to pressure from Carl Icahn backed activist fund Cevian Capital last year.
The pressure saw Aviva vow to cut its costs by £750m and pay out £4.75bn to shareholders, after the Swedish fund called for £5bn to be returned.
Aviva chief executive Amanda Blanc, who joined the insurer in 2020, said the firm remains “very well positioned to benefit from the long-term growth trends in our markets”.
The company chief said the firm’s current position also instills confidence it will be able to “successfully navigate the uncertain economic conditions” ahead.
The positive trading update comes after Aviva named City veteran Mike Craston as a non-executive director at the firm.