CGNU, the U.K.’s largest insurer, reported reported that new global sales in the year 2000 increased 24 percent to £13.5 billion ($19.98 billion), following strong growth in the life, pension and investment funds.
The results surprised analysts, who had seen increased costs associated with the merger of CGU and Norwich Union as a drain on performance, but apparently the company was able to integrate operations without any severe problems.
U.K. sales rose 21 percent, a particularly encouraging sign, in a market that has been characterized as “stagnant.” CGNU got a real boost from record breaking fourth quarter sales, following the rebranding of all its U.K. products under the name Norwich Union.
The “annual premium equivalent” figures also rose by 10 percent to £2.17 billion ($$3.21 billion).
European sales increased as well, with a 33 percent rise in France, 47 percent in The Netherlands, and 600 percent in Spain following the conclusion of an alliance with Bancaja, Spain’s fourth largest bank, to provide bancassurance products.
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