By Ian Walker
Prudential PLC (PRU.LN) said Wednesday that it expects to complete the demerger of M&GPrudential in the fourth quarter of this year as it reported a 21% rise in operating profit for the first half.
The insurance-and-investment business added that preparations are complete for Prudential plc's move to group-wide supervision by the Hong Kong Insurance Authority.
Prudential made an operating profit from continuing operations--a key industry figure which strips out M&GPrudential--of 2.02 billion pounds ($2.44 billion) for the half year ended June 30 compared with GBP1.67 billion for the comparable period last year. Asia operating profit was up 14% while M&GPrudential's fell 6.7% to GBP687 million.
Group Solvency II surplus--a key measure of balance-sheet strength--was estimated at GBP16.7 billion, equivalent to a ratio of 222%, compared with GBP17.2 billion and a ratio of 232% at Dec. 31, 2018.
Gross premiums earned were GBP16.29 billion for the period, compared with GBP14.79 billion a year earlier. Net profit from continuing operations was GBP890 million compared with GBP1.27 billion.
The board has declared a dividend of 16.45 pence a share, up from 15.67 pence for the first half of 2018.
In March 2018, Prudential said that it would spinoff M&GPrudential, the international savings and investments business formed by the merger of asset manager M&G and Prudential's U.K. and Europe insurance operations.
M&GPrudential is lead by Chief Executive John Foley. It has also appointed Mike Evans as chairman.
Write to Ian Walker at firstname.lastname@example.org; @IanWalk40289749