Baloise expects to achieve a substantial profit for the period

Basel, The Baloise Group expects to report a profit of more than CHF 340 million for the first half of 2014, which represents a year-on-year increase of more than 40 per cent. The key drivers of this good result were the strong income from life insurance, the solid operating results in non-life insurance, and the profitable growth achieved in the Company's core markets.

The growth in earnings from life insurance business was especially pleasing. The life insurance business earned encouraging levels of income in the first half of 2014 despite the sharp decline in interest rates. The life insurance operating segment was boosted by gains on interest hedging instruments and the strengthening of reserves that had already taken place in previous periods due to the low level of interest rates.

The performance of the non-life business was attributable to the exceptionally low level of claims incurred in Switzerland and the pleasing operating profits achieved in the Company's international markets. The Baloise Group expects to report a net combined ratio of just over 93 per cent for the first six months of 2014.

Baloise generated impressive growth in its core markets and target segments in the first six months of 2014.

These strong half-year financial results reaffirm the strategic approach adopted by Baloise. By focusing on attractive core markets, rigorously implementing its target-customer management policies and offering innovative supplementary services around safety and security, Baloise is excellently placed to meet its targets of a combined ratio of between 93 per cent and 96 per cent, a new business margin in excess of 10 per cent and a return on equity of between 8 per cent and 12 per cent.

The Baloise Group is more than just a traditional insurance company. The changing security, safety and service needs of society in the digital age lie at the heart of its business activities. The 7,400 or so employees of Baloise therefore focus on the wishes of their customers. The best possible customer service, combined with innovative products and services, makes Baloise the first choice for people who want to feel 'simply safe'. Located at the heart of Europe, with its head office in Basel, the Baloise Group is a provider of prevention, pension, assistance and insurance solutions. Its core markets are Switzerland, Germany, Belgium and Luxembourg. In Switzerland, with Baloise Bank SoBa, the Group also operates as a specialised financial services provider, offering a combination of insurance and banking services. The Group offers innovative pension products to retail customers throughout Europe from its competence centre in Luxembourg. Bâloise Holding Ltd shares are listed in the main segment of the SIX Swiss Exchange.