Baloise covers millions in storm-related claims and delivers

Basel, August 26, 2021. “In recent months, we have experienced severe weather events of historic proportions that have highlighted once again how important insurance protection is for our customers. Baloise is paying out millions in order to help thousands of customers to deal with the consequences of these natural disasters and to mitigate the financial damage. I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to all our colleagues who have been making huge additional efforts to support our customers in these challenging circumstances. Operational excellence shines brightest in darker times. I am proud that we have been able to deliver a very strong business performance in this six-month period despite the devastating weather events in Switzerland. The recovery in profit in the first half of 2021, the strong performance of the life business and the profitability of the non-life business despite further extraordinary loss events strengthen my confidence that we will be able to achieve our objectives for the year as a whole. Baloise is thus proving that it is a sustainably successful business that can deliver outstanding results for all of its stakeholders even in extreme conditions.” Gert De Winter

Financial results for the first half of 2021 in brief

  • Profit attributable to shareholders for the first half of 2021 amounted to CHF 302.3 million (H1 2020: CHF 177.7 million), a year-on-year increase of 70.1 per cent. In the prior-year period, profit had been adversely affected by turmoil in the capital markets and expenses in connection with the pandemic. In the first half of 2021, claims in connection with storms in June, which primarily occurred in Switzerland, had a net negative impact of CHF 40.1 million on profit. But the positive trend in the capital markets and the upturn in interest rates shored up the profit attributable to shareholders. Baloise expects that damage caused by the flooding and storms in July 2021 will have a further net negative impact on profit in the high tens of millions in the second half of the year.
  • The volume of business grew encouragingly and was up by 9.2 per cent year on year at the end of the reporting period (H1 2021: CHF 5,389.2 million). In addition to the healthy organic growth in all the national subsidiaries, particularly in the attractive non-life business, the increase in volume was also driven by factors such as the full integration of the non-life portfolio of Athora in Belgium and the strong growth in investment-type premiums.
  • The volume of premiums in the non-life business increased in the first half of 2021. This encouraging trend was driven in part by the acquisition of the Athora portfolio, which was fully included in the figures for the first half of 2021. In the non-life business, the volume of premiums surged by 8.2 per cent to CHF 2,617.3 million (H1 2020: CHF 2,419.5 million). Despite the losses that Baloise incurred as a result of adverse weather events in Switzerland, the net combined ratio stood at a solid 92.3 per cent (H1 2020: 91.1 per cent). The storms caused this ratio to deteriorate by 2.1 percentage points. 
  • Despite a selective underwriting policy, gross premiums written in the life business rose by 2.4 per cent to reach CHF 2,220.8 million (H1 2020: CHF 2,168.1 million). EBIT in the life business amounted to a very healthy CHF 194.6 million in the first half of 2021, which was 48.2 per cent higher than the EBIT achieved in the prior-year period (H1 2020: CHF 131.3 million). This very good result was driven mainly by the strong uptrend in the capital markets and the small improvement in the interest-rate situation. The new business margin rose to 47.6 per cent in the first half of 2021 thanks to an improved business mix (H1 2020: 44.9 per cent).
  • Asset management delivered a net return on insurance assets of 1.1 per cent, a slight increase compared with the prior-year figure of 1.0 per cent. Net new assets in the business with external customers amounted to CHF 505.5 million in the first half of 2021, a year-on-year increase of 48 per cent. 
  • Baloise is very well capitalised. Consolidated equity went up by 1.6 per cent year on year to reach CHF 7,100.8 million at the midway point of 2021 (2020: CHF 6,985.7 million). In June 2021, Standard & Poor’s confirmed its rating of A+ for the Baloise Group.
  • In the field of sustainability, Baloise is currently working hard to integrate ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) criteria into its underwriting processes. For example, Baloise will strengthen its focus on green industries. Further climate protection milestones were achieved by joining the Swiss Climate Foundation and offsetting all unavoidable carbon emissions caused by the company’s operations.
  • Baloise is continuing to develop its ecosystems and to drive innovation: further expansion of the Home and Mobility ecosystems. As part of plans to expand the Home ecosystem, Baloise intends to enter into a partnership with UBS. In the Mobility ecosystem, Baloise has been establishing more partnerships and making further investments in recent months, for example in Danish start-up GoMore: www.baloise.com/mobility.

Webcast to present the financial results for the first half of 2021

  • Thursday, 26 August 2021, 9.30am – 10.30am CET
  • Dial-in number: +41 (0)58 310 5000
  • Link to webcast  

Conference call for analysts

  • Thursday, 26 August 2021, 11am – 12.30pm CET
  • Dial-in number: +41 (0)58 310 5000
  • Link to webcast  

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 7,700 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.

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