NN Group reports full-year 2020 operating result of EUR 1.9 billion

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Algemeen advies 18/02/2021 08:27
reduction target achieved
Operating result increased to EUR 963 million from EUR 881 million in the second half of 2019, mainly driven by a higher investment margin and lower administrative expenses at Netherlands Life; Full-year 2020 operating result of EUR 1,889 million, up 5.3% on 2019

Operating capital generation of EUR 450 million versus EUR 653 million in the second half of 2019, reflecting the negative impact of lower interest rates; Full-year 2020 operating capital generation of EUR 993 million, compared with EUR 1,349 million in 2019

Limited negative impact of Covid-19 on operating result of around EUR 23 million in the second half of 2020, bringing the full-year 2020 impact to EUR 53 million

Net result of EUR 1,317 million, up from EUR 844 million in the second half of 2019; Full-year 2020 net result of EUR 1,904 million versus EUR 1,962 million in 2019

Further cost reductions of EUR 23 million in the second half of 2020; total cost reductions of EUR 404 million versus the full-year 2016 administrative expense base, thereby achieving the cost reduction target

Value of new business of EUR 144 million, up 17.9% from the second half of 2019, mainly driven by the recovery in sales of COLI products in Japan Life

Focus on all stakeholders; high employee engagement and increased ESG-integrated Assets under Management
Customer satisfaction remained broadly stable amidst the pandemic, with 4 of our businesses scoring an above market average Net Promotor Score

Employee engagement increased substantially with an overall score of 7.9, up from 7.4 in 2019

ESG-integrated Assets under Management increased to 74% from 68% in 2019

Resilient balance sheet; delivering on our commitment to attractive capital returns to shareholders
NN Group Solvency II ratio of 210% versus 221% at 30 June 2020, mainly reflecting the inclusion of NN Bank in the Group Solvency II calculations as of the end of 2020 and the deduction of the proposed 2020 final dividend, partly offset by operating capital generation

Cash capital position at the holding decreased to EUR 1,170 million in the second half of 2020, reflecting capital flows to shareholders and remittances from subsidiaries

2020 final dividend proposal of EUR 1.47 per ordinary share or approximately EUR 456 million, bringing the pro forma total 2020 dividend to EUR 2.33 per ordinary share, up 7.9% on 20191)

New share buyback programme of EUR 250 million announced in line with dividend policy

Statement of David Knibbe, CEO
‘In 2020 we delivered a strong financial and commercial performance, even though it clearly was an unprecedented year, marked by the Covid-19 pandemic and various other economic, political and regulatory developments. These circumstances impacted people and societies, and are reshaping markets, industries and companies - which requires adaptability and resilience from us all. When designing our new strategy in the first half of the year, we took these changes into account as much as possible. It is our aim to pursue long-term value creation, based on the belief that a focus on the well-being of customers and employees is in the end beneficial for all our stakeholder groups.

For our employees, we want to create an inclusive and inspiring working environment, which stimulates agility, efficiency and transformation. Last year, our people demonstrated proactivity and flexibility in giving unwavering attention to our customers in a difficult change environment. This has also proven to be a strong accelerator for the transformation journey we embarked on, of becoming more customer centric and data driven. Thanks to the efforts of our colleagues, who were mostly working remotely, we were able to continue to go the extra mile for our customers. We were for example able to provide payment holidays for insurance premiums and mortgages to customers facing financial difficulties, and temporary coverage of delivery services for businesses that normally do not deliver products. Also, we supported the communities in which we live and work, for example by computer donations, enabling children to home school. Besides supporting customers to navigate today's challenges, we also want to help by giving them the confidence to look and plan ahead. This way, insurers can make an important contribution to economic recovery, a goal we are very committed to support.

Our overall financial performance remained strong in 2020. The second half-year operating result was up more than 9% compared with the same period in 2019, with Netherlands Life posting solid results on the back of the accelerated shift to higher-yielding assets in the first half of the year. At Netherlands Non-life, lower underwriting results in Disability & Accident were partly offset by lower claims in Property & Casualty and the inclusion of the results of VIVAT Non?life. The overall combined ratio held up well at 95.7%. Further expense savings were achieved across the company, allowing us to achieve the cost savings target of EUR 400 million.

We saw resilient commercial momentum in the second half of the year as sales were up at Japan Life and Insurance Europe, resulting in a higher value of new business, despite Covid-19 restrictions. Defined Contribution assets under management increased to EUR 24.6 billion, reflecting our market leading position in Dutch pensions. Total Assets under Management at NN Investment Partners increased to EUR 300 billion, driven by positive market performance and strong net third party inflows of EUR 10.1 billion. NN Bank, the fifth largest mortgage originator in the Netherlands, originated new mortgages for a total amount of EUR 3.8 billion.

As expected, operating capital generation in 2020 was impacted by the exceptional market circumstances and low interest rates, as well as the suspension of bank dividends. On the other hand, our accelerated shift to higher-yielding assets provided some offset in the form of higher investment margins. Our strong solvency and capital generation support attractive and growing cash returns to shareholders. We followed the request for prudence from regulators, and limited dividend flows from our subsidiaries to the holding. However, our strong Solvency II ratio and capital generation allows us to fulfill the commitments made in our dividend policy.

With the aim to contribute to the well-being of people and planet, we supported the transition to a sustainable economy by engaging with hundreds of investee companies, and voting for change at more than 2,500 AGMs. Through these actions, we also give substance to our ambition to transition our proprietary investment portfolio to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement. Together with around 40 financial institutions, NN Investment Partners signed the Finance for Biodiversity Pledge calling on global leaders to act, and committing ourselves to protect and restore biodiversity through our finance activities and investments. We are pleased to have received external recognition for our ESG performance by again being included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, both the World and Europe index, and by our improved CDP climate change disclosure A- rating.

All in all, we have made a promising start with the implementation of our new strategy and have a solid foundation for delivering both on our financial and non-financial target.’

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tijd 09.08
NN Groep EUR 36,15 -1,17 vol. 132.000

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