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Prudential expands 39% YoY  in new business profits for first semester

Outlook for the region remains mixed.

Prudential announced that it saw its new business profit reach $1.49b in the first six months of the year, this grew 39% on a year-on-year (YoY) basis.

The expansion was on the back of annual growths in 17 life insurance markets with all but one showing double-digit growth.

Annual premium equivalent (APE) sales reached $3.03b, up 42%. Likewise, adjusted operating earnings went up 6% to $1.46b.

EEV operating profit registered a 22% expansion to $2.16b, whilst EEV shareholders' equity accumulated $43.7b.

ASEAN business

The insurer indicated its ASEAN business growing exponentially.

Malaysia’s APE sales climbed 12% whilst new business profit expanded 11%. Indonesia saw APE sales jumping 42% and new business earnings climbing 22%.

The Philippines showed a 13% expansion in APE sales accompanied by strong business profit.

Singapore and Vietnam, on the other hand, saw dips in their APE sales and new business profits.

Market segments

In the first half of 2023, notable success was observed in Hong Kong across domestic and Chinese Mainland Visitor segments. 

APE sales from the Domestic segment surged by 68%, while the Chinese Mainland Visitor segment experienced a substantial boost in sales after the border with the mainland opened in February 2023. 

Robust demand for savings products in the Hong Kong sector was evident, marked by larger savings case sizes compared to 2019. 

The product mix for new policy counts began to normalise. Improved customer experiences in digital onboarding, and underwriting, and expanded multi-currency options enhanced both health and protection offerings and savings products.

In Macau, agent recruitment started following the branch's establishment, while the new license rounded off Prudential's presence in all 11 cities within the Greater Bay Area, encompassing a population of over 85 million.

Turning to the Chinese Mainland, the company concentrated on achieving a balanced product mix in the first half of 2023. 

At the beginning of the second quarter, certain guaranteed savings products were deliberately withdrawn from both agency and bancassurance channels. 

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Consequently, the agency and bancassurance channels reduced the proportion of short-term, non-participating products in favor of higher quality, higher-margin annuities, and products with longer premium payment terms. 

This had a more pronounced impact on bancassurance volumes in the second quarter. 

Despite this, agency sales remained robust, with a 25% increase in APE sales and a noteworthy 53% rise in productivity. 

Overall, new business profit experienced a slight decline of (3) percentage points, excluding economic factors. Margins improved for both agency and bancassurance, aggregately rising by 7 percentage points on an ex-economics basis.

In Taiwan, APE sales grew by 28%, and new business profit saw an uptick, driven by strong performances from both existing and new bank partners. 

For India, the positive trajectory and strong growth persisted, as evidenced by increased new business profit in the first half. APE sales surged by 29%14, facilitated by the addition of over 17,000 new agent recruits and the establishment of more than 100 new distribution partnerships.

“Consumers in Asia remain resilient despite the challenging environment. While the outlook for Asian markets is mixed, our momentum in the first half has continued into the third quarter. This underscores the strength of our multi-market growth engine backed by our diversified channel mix, which is key to driving sustainable value in the long term.” the insurer said in a statement.


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