Metropolitan in operational ascendancy despite inexorable declines on world investment markets

12 November 2008 Metropolitan

From an operational perspective, Metropolitan’s performance for the nine months to 30 September 2008 was very good, with results in all areas exceeding expectations.

Metropolitan Retail’s new business achievements were particularly commendable given the tough economic environment.

Growth of 21% in the present value of premiums (PVP) of retail new business was one of the highlights, especially as new business volumes were higher across most distribution channels and persistency levels were sustained.

In the third quarter, both retail recurring and single premium income reached record levels of R253 million and R1 billion respectively, up 17% and 34% over the corresponding period in 2007.

The Metropolitan Health Group (MHG) continued to achieve significant increases in the number of members it has under administration, enrolling approximately 400 new members of the Government Employees Medical Scheme (GEMS) per day.

Metropolitan Employee Benefits’ (MetEB) new administration products – Neon, for small to medium funds and Benchmark, for mega funds – started to generate new business inflows although securing new investment contracts in the current employee benefits environment remained challenging.

Metropolitan International also made good progress in growing its businesses in Africa.

However, external circumstances – the global economic and stock market meltdown – have had a severe negative impact on investment asset values worldwide, a situation from which Metropolitan has not been exempted.

“Having once again proved our operational durability, we are confident that, given our entrenched market position and diversified income streams, we will continue to meet the challenges facing the industry at present,” says chief executive Wilhelm van Zyl (pictured).

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