Monday 9 March 2020 12:27 pm

Phoenix posts profit jump in strong annual results

Insurance consolidator Phoenix said profit jumped 14 per cent last year and cash generation exceeded targets to hit £707m.

Phoenix buys life and pensions books from companies looking to move them off their balance sheets.

Operating profit rose to £810m in 2019 from £708m in the previous year.

Read more: Pensions consolidator Phoenix posts jump in profit

Cash generation rose to £707m, up from £664m the previous year and exceeding the cash generation target of £600m – £700m for the year.

Phoenix has set a cash generation target of £800m – £900m for 2020.

“We see significant potential for further value creation in the bulk purchase annuities market,” chairman Nicholas Lyons said.

“I remain convinced that the drivers for consolidation are inevitably increasing and will tip the balance toward more institutions seeking to divest their capital-heavy legacy businesses to leaders in the heritage space such as Phoenix,” he added.

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

Full year dividend rose slightly to 46.8p per share from 46p per share last year.

The company’s new chief executive Andy Briggs is set to take over from Clive Bannister this month after joining from Aviva.

The company announced today that deputy finance director Rakesh Thakrar would succeed Jim McConville as finance director on 15 May.

Shares fell three per cent to 663p.