Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc has grown its balance sheet to N9.5 billion 2016 as against N9.2 billion recorded in 2015.
The company said, this feat was achieved despite the harsh operating environment arising from economic recession that crippled the disposable income of Nigerians in its last financial year.
Its Chairman, Oluseun Ajayi, at the company’s 22nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos, said the firm investment income also grew from N214 million in 2015 to N281 million in 2016, representing about 32 per cent growth rate. Moreover, he said the total comprehensive income for the year net of tax rose to N186 million in 2016 from N19 million in 2015.
Following the company’s increase in foreign currency exposure and the drop in consumption of insurance by hitherto insuring public, he stressed that the firm’s profit before tax for the year under review was greatly impacted, as it dropped from N454 million in 2015 to N44.98 million in 2016.
However, company witnessed a drop in its Gross Premium Written N7.1 billion in 2015 to N6.3 billion in 2016, representing 12 per cent drop in revenue for the year under review.
Speaking on the industry, he said 2016 was a tough year for many business operators and the insurance industry with an attendant foreign exchange scarcity which had negative effect on the value of the Naira.
He said the recessed economic situation, that pervaded operations of most corporate organisations in the country, is beginning to show signs of recovery, believing the firm will be a beneficiary of the recovery process in the current year.
On the company’s outlook, Ajayi said: “The drive to continue to uphold comprehensive growth strategy still forms the background upon which our company is built. With our updated knowledge and understanding of the domestic business dynamics, our strategic direction will be designed to proactively envisage the likely opportunities that are inherent in the industry and mitigate against possible threats that may adversely affect our operations in the current year and beyond.
“The expansive economy and growing population offer great opportunities to businesses in the country. The potential of the economy cannot be underestimated even in the face of renewed interest from international investors. All of these, in addition to the low penetration rate of insurance market, are pointers to great opportunities available in our country and industry. We also plan to align with various NAICOM’s growth initiatives in advancing the course of the insurance industry in Nigeria.
“Resources will be continually deployed in line with our strategic master plan to achieve greater success and take our frontal position in the years ahead. We are currently in the process of initiating another five-year strategic direction that will take the company to the next phase of our growth from 2018 through 2022.
Technology, no doubt will form the pivotal thrust of this process in ensuring that we remain competitive and relevant in the insurance market space in many years to come.’’