Our recent performance

Operational highlights

For the year ended 31 December 2019:

  • Gross premiums written up by 8.1% in constant currency, despite disciplined action to reduce $200 million in underperforming lines. 
  • Group profits were impacted by large catastrophe events, with $165 million reserved for Hurricane Dorian and Typhoons Faxai and Hagibis, in addition to $25 million of reduced fees and profit commissions.
  • Hiscox Retail now a $2.2 billion business with profits increased by 22% to $178.4 million. Combined ratio of 98.7%, in line with guidance of between 97-99% for 2019.
    • Hiscox UK and Hiscox Europe generate good profits, driven by a strong performance in small business insurance.
    • Hiscox USA is profitable, with action taken to improve performance in D&O and media business progressing as planned.
    • 180,000 Retail customers added in 2019, taking the total to 1.2 million globally – including more than 450,000 direct and partnerships customers. Growth in Retail expected to be in the middle of the 5-15% target range for 2020.
    • Retail combined ratio to improve by 1-2% per annum and return to 90-95% target range in 2022.
  • Hiscox London Market impacted by catastrophes and property claims, but market conditions continue to improve. Hiscox Syndicate 33 increased its capacity by 19% to make the most of any opportunities for profitable growth in 2020 as rates rise for the third successive year, up in 14 out of 15 lines.
  • Hiscox Re & ILS impacted by natural catastrophes, market-wide adverse development on prior year catastrophes, as well as deterioration in some previously exited lines.
  • Strong investment return of $223.0 million (2018: $38.1 million).
  • Robust reserves 9.4% above actuarial estimate, with continued positive development in Retail. Reserve releases expected to be between 3-5% of opening net reserves in 2020.
  • Full year dividend up by 3.5% to 29.6 cents, in line with the Group’s progressive dividend policy.

Bronek Masojada, Chief Executive Officer, Hiscox Ltd, commented:

“Our strategy of balance, between big-ticket lines and our more steady retail earnings, provides resilience and opportunity. Our growing Retail profits and strong investment return has enabled us to weather a third consecutive year of storms. We are investing for growth as we look to capture the many opportunities we see ahead.”  

Find out more about our performance over the last five years

Group KPIs

  2019 2018
Gross premiums written ($m) 4,030.7 3,778.3
Net premiums earned ($m) 2,635.6 2,573.6
Profit before tax ($m) 53.1 135.6
Combined ratio (%) 105.7 94.9
Basic earnings per share (¢) 17.2 41.6
Total ordinary dividend per share for year (¢) 43.4 41.9
Net asset value per share (¢) 768.2 798.6
Tangible net asset value per share  (¢) 670.6 726.2
Return on equity (%) 2.2 5.3
Bronek Masojada
Our strategy of balance, between big-ticket lines and our more steady retail earnings, provides resilience and opportunity. Our growing Retail profits and strong investment return has enabled us to weather a third consecutive year of storms. We are investing for growth as we look to capture the many opportunities we see ahead.

Bronek Masojada