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TOP NEWS: Phoenix Group optimistic on full-year cash generation

18th Sep 2023 09:01

(Alliance News) - Phoenix Group Holdings PLC on Monday hailed a productive first half, and it predicts that 2024 will be its first positive year for net fund flows.

Shares in the company rose 1.1% to 542.68 pence each in London on Monday morning.

The insurer reported that its incremental new business long-term cash generation more than doubled in the first half of 2023 to GBP885 million from GBP430 million a year prior.

The figure was boosted by growth to GBP665 million in Retirement Solutions, from GBP282 million a year prior.

New business net fund flows surged 72% to GBP3.1 billion from GBP1.8 billion a year earlier.

"Phoenix is now on track to deliver positive group net fund flows from 2024, for the first time in its history," the company said.

It means that new business inflows will more than offset our Heritage run-off outflows for the first time.

Phoenix reported GBP898 million of cash generation for the first half, down slightly from GBP950 million a year prior, though it means the company is confident of delivering at the top-end of its GBP1.3 billion to GBP1.4 billion full-year guidance range.

Phoenix declared a 26.0 pence per share interim dividend, up 4.8% from 24.8p a year prior.

Looking ahead, it expects more organic growth in 2023 and will "continue to assess further M&A opportunities".

The company completed the Sun Life of Canada UK Ltd acquisition from Sun Life Financial Inc back in April for GBP248 million.

Phoenix also said the shift to IFRS 17 accounting standard, ushered into the insurance sector at the start of 2023, will not alter its fundamentals.

"As a result, IFRS 17 does not change our strategy or dividend, and we will remain focused on delivering cash and capital," it added.

Phoenix reports its complete half-year financial statements on September 28.

By Eric Cunha, Alliance News news editor

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