RSA Group has announced a 15% increase in its operating profit to £751m for its preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2020.
The group also reported that underlying profit before tax increased to £718m. However it revealed statutory profit before tax dropped 2% to £483m from £492m the previous year attributed to market impacts from Covid-19, bid costs, exits and restructuring.
Additionally, the group’s underwriting profit increased 36% to £550m from £405m in 2019.
The group also suggested that in addition to paying out claims of “some £4.6bn for business as usual”, Covid-19 related claims of over £250m were provided for, on top of a “range of other customer support measures” from premium rebates to “bill forbearance’ and charitable donations.
RSA claimed its Covid-19 frequency benefits were “offset” by lower premiums, adding that direct Covid-19 related claims, claims provisions and projected claims inflation were also impacted for both the prior year and current year.
Stephen Hester, chief executive, RSA Group, said: “Naturally, the impact of Covid-19 was the major feature of our year, as for society as a whole. We prioritised the safety of our employees and sustaining service to customers.
“The Group paid out some £4.6bn in normal claims whilst also providing for over £250m in Covid-19 specific claims, together with offering a range of other customer support measures. The Group has delivered on large parts of our best in class ambitions.”
He added: “This in turn drove the 52% premium we were able to negotiate in Q4 through an all cash bid from Intact and Tryg. The offer is on track to complete in the coming months, ending a chapter for RSA but not the whole story.”