AXA Posts 4.3 % Q1 Revenue Gains

May 14, 2001

France’s AXA Group posted total consolidated revenues of € 20.6 billion ($18.3 billion) for the first quarter of 2001 a 4.3 percent gain over last year.

The company broke down its revenue streams as follows:
– Life & Savings – 60 percent of total € 12.38 billion ($10.9 billion), up 0.6 percent
– Property & Casualty – 24 percent € 5 billion ($4.4 billion), up 3.3 percent
– Asset Management – 4 percent € 0.9 billion ($ 792 million), down 0.6 percent
– International Insurance – 10 percent € 2 billion ($1.76 billion) up 40.5 percent

The drop in asset management revenues was attributed to the weak equity markets in the U.S. and Europe in the first quarter. But CEO Henri de Castries described the overall performance as a vindication of the company’s strategy, stating, “The overall strength of revenues achieved in this challenging quarter validates the benefit of a diversified strategy designed to perform well despite equity market weakness.”

AXA’s revenues were particularly affected by the decline in life and savings premiums of its U.S. subsidiaries, Equitable Life and Alliance Capital, which suffered an overall 13.6 percent decline during the period. Annuity premiums, which comprise 60 percent of the total declined by 18.9 percent.

The results evinced the advantages extremely large diversified insurance companies have in spreading out their revenue sources over different product areas and geographical locations. While AXA saw declines in some areas, such as U.K. auto insurance or French annuity sales, these were offset by increases in other areas such as Australian retirement products and German commercial lines.

De Castries expressed his confidence, stating:, “We are becoming more optimistic regarding this year revenue growth, due to recent stabilization of equity markets and continuing higher rates in our Property and Casualty markets. While recent economic conditions have caused us to be vigilant on expenses, we have not pulled back from the aggressive implementation of our advice driven, open architecture strategy.”

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