By Dominic Chopping
STOCKHOLM--Investor AB (INVE-B.SK) on Wednesday proposed a dividend increase after the value of its investments rose sharply during the fourth quarter, generating total shareholder return of 7%.
Total shareholder return for the year reached 40%.
Investor's net asset value per share rose to 550 Swedish kronor ($57.77) at the end of December 2019 from SEK507 at the end of September. On an adjusted basis, NAV stood at SEK634, while the net profit attributable to shareholders rose to SEK33.72 billion in the fourth quarter from a loss of SEK45.1 billion a year earlier.
Atlas Copco AB (ATCO-A.SK), ABB and Saab AB (SAAB-B.SK) generated the highest total returns during the quarter.
"On the back of the softening in economic activity, we continue to prioritize agility and financial flexibility," Chief Executive Johan Forssell said.
"At Investor, our balance sheet and strong liquidity give us great flexibility to invest within prioritized areas when attractive opportunities arise," he said.
The company raised its total full-year dividend to SEK14 a share from SEK13.
Investor is the investment vehicle of Sweden's prominent Wallenberg family and owns stakes in some of the country's largest companies, including telecom giant Ericsson AB (ERIC), home appliance manufacturer Electrolux AB (ELUX-B.SK) and lender Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB (SEB-A.SK).
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