Wednesday 7 August 2019 10:47 am

Pensions consolidator Phoenix posts jump in profit

Insurance firm Phoenix has posted a surge in profit for the first half of the year after buying out more British pension schemes.

The FTSE 100 company reported a pre-tax profit of £217m in the six months to the end of June, compared to a £42m loss last year.

Read more: Insurer Phoenix on the hunt for deals after strong results

Cash generation dropped 18 per cent to £287m over the period. However, the firm said it expected to hit the upper end of its full-year cash generation target of £600m to £700m.

Phoenix, which bought Standard Life Aberdeen’s insurance arm for £3bn last year, also said it was on track to hit its cost savings target of £1.2bn from the deal.

Shares in Phoenix rose roughly two per cent in morning trading.

“The life insurance sector continues to consolidate and the M&A pipeline remains strong,” said chief executive Clive Bannister.

“We are ready to do deals that meet our acquisition criteria and I am confident that Phoenix will continue to be the market leader in this consolidation process.”

Read more: Insurance M&A jumps to highest level in four years in first half of 2019

But Phoenix, which has 10m policy holders in the UK, said gross inflows to its UK open business had dropped from £5.5bn to £4.8bn year-on-year, partly due to uncertainties around Brexit.

The company said its own Brexit preparations were complete with £250m of capital injected into an Irish subsidiary.

Main image credit: Getty