The Westaim Corporation Reports 2011 Year End Results

TORONTO, Feb. 28, 2012 /CNW/ - The Westaim Corporation ("Westaim") today announced it recorded net income of $9.2 million or $0.01 per share for the quarter ended December 31, 2011, compared to net income of $3.3 million or $0.01 per share for the quarter ended December 31, 2010.  For the year ended December 31, 2011, Westaim recorded net income of $32.8 million or $0.05 per share, compared to net income of $54.1 million or $0.11 per share for the year ended December 31, 2010, which included a net gain of $22.1 million on the purchase of JEVCO Insurance Company ("Jevco"), a wholly-owned subsidiary.  Income from continuing operations, before income taxes, was $3.5 million higher in the fourth quarter of 2011 when compared to the same quarter in 2010.  Net income for the three months and year ended December 31, 2011 included a deferred income tax recovery of $2.9 million resulting from an internal corporate reorganization.  Net income for the year ended December 31, 2010 included a deferred income tax recovery of $15.3 million resulting from an internal corporate reorganization.  At December 31, 2011, Westaim's consolidated shareholders' equity was $417.3 million or $0.65 per share, an increase from $377.3 million or $0.59 per share at December 31, 2010.

Westaim's acquisition of Jevco closed on March 29, 2010.  As a result, Westaim consolidated the results of Jevco beginning in the second quarter of 2010.  Jevco is a leading Canadian specialty insurer offering products through two divisions.  The Personal Lines Division provides insurance in the non-standard automobile, standard automobile, motorcycle and recreational vehicles product lines.  The Commercial Lines Division offers property and liability, niche commercial automobile and surety product lines.

In the fourth quarter of 2011, direct premiums written were $71.5 million and net premiums written were $67.5 million, compared to $72.1 million in direct premiums written and $65.9 million in net premiums written in the same quarter of 2010.  In the three months ended December 31, 2011, net premiums earned were $74.0 million, producing a Combined Ratio of 92.9%.  In the comparable quarter in 2010, net premiums earned were $69.2 million, producing a Combined Ratio of 99.2%.  For the year ended December 31, 2011, direct premiums written were $350.0 million, net premiums written were $333.4 million, net premiums earned were $326.1 million, producing a Combined Ratio of 95.5%.

Total assets of Westaim at December 31, 2011 were $1.30 billion, compared to $1.27 billion at December 31, 2010.  At December 31, 2011, the Company's investment portfolio of $1.02 billion was invested predominantly in corporate and government bonds. During the third quarter, the Company invested approximately 10% of its investment portfolio in Canadian dividend paying common equities with the intention of generating an attractive yield. In the three months ended December 31, 2011, net investment income and net realized investment gains, net of foreign exchange loss, of $9.4 million were included in net income; and net unrealized investment gains, net of income taxes, of $2.3 million were included in other comprehensive income.  In the comparable period in 2010, net investment income and net realized investment gains, net of foreign exchange loss, of $9.9 million were included in net income; and net unrealized investment losses, net of income taxes, of $6.0 million were included in other comprehensive loss.  For the year ended December 31, 2011, net investment income and net realized investment gains, including foreign exchange gain, of $40.4 million were included in net income; and net unrealized investment gains, net of income taxes, of $7.1 million were included in other comprehensive income.  For the year ended December 31, 2010, net investment income and net realized investment gains, net of foreign exchange loss, of $33.8 million were included in net income; and net unrealized investment gains, net of income taxes, of $4.2 million were included in other comprehensive income.

"Westaim completed a positive year in 2011, with the Company's book value per share increasing to $0.65 at December 31, 2011, up by 10% from December 31, 2010.  The Company has a strong balance sheet and is ready to respond to opportunities and execute its business plan.  Our non-standard automobile line of business, in line with our industry peers, showed improved and profitable results in 2011 and we expect this improvement to continue in 2012.  Increases in motorcycle premium rates will be in effect earlier in 2012 than 2011.  We believe that the impact of the rate increases, along with certain product changes planned to be implemented in 2012, will further enhance the performance of this line of business going forward," said Cameron MacDonald, Chief Executive Officer of Westaim.

At December 31, 2011, Jevco had an MCT ratio of 326% and a B++ credit rating from A.M. Best.

Westaim is a financial holding company focused on the property and casualty insurance industry. Westaim's common shares are listed on The Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbol WED.

Certain portions of this press release as well as other public statements by Westaim contain forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements include but are not limited to statements concerning JEVCO's business and the industry in which it operates; investment strategies and expected rates of return; and strategic alternatives to maximize value for shareholder. These statements are based on current expectations that are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions and Westaim can give no assurance that these expectations are correct. Westaim's actual results could differ materially from those anticipated by forward-looking statements for various reasons generally beyond our control, including but not limited to: (i) changes in market conditions or deterioration in underlying investments; (ii) general economic, market, financing, regulatory and industry developments and conditions; (iii) the risks relating to JEVCO's business; and (iv) other risk factors set forth in Westaim's Annual Report, Quarterly Reports or Annual Information Form. Westaim disclaims any intention or obligation to revise forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise except as required by law. All forward-looking statements are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement.


THE WESTAIM CORPORATION
               
Financial Highlights                
                 
(thousands of Canadian dollars except percentage, share and per share data)            
                 
                 
     Three Months Ended December 31     Year Ended December 31 
    2011   2010   2011   2010
                 
Direct premiums written    $ 71,480    $ 72,079    $ 349,953    $ 273,382
Net premiums written    $ 67,535    $ 65,889    $ 333,361    $ 254,872
                 
Net premiums earned    $ 73,968    $ 69,215    $ 326,109    $ 236,304
Underwriting expenses   (68,739)   (68,646)   (311,478)   (230,678)
Underwriting income   5,229   569   14,631   5,626
Net investment income and net realized investment gains   9,852   10,575   40,359   34,911
Foreign exchange (loss) gain   (490)   (648)   33   (1,076)
Corporate costs   (4,590)   (3,999)   (13,117)   (11,512)
Site restoration provision (expense) recovery   (13)   (5)   94   478
Other income   -   -   2,250   -
Gain on business acquisition   -   -   -   25,084
Costs of business acquisition   -   -   -   (2,936)
Income from continuing operations, before income taxes   9,988   6,492   44,250   50,575
Income taxes (expense) recovery   (727)   (3,153)   (11,329)   4,538
Income from continuing operations   9,261   3,339   32,921   55,113
Loss from discontinued operations, net of income taxes   (53)   (58)   (170)   (990)
Net income    $ 9,208    $ 3,281    $ 32,751    $ 54,123
                 
                 
Earnings per share                
Income from continuing operations - basic and diluted    $ 0.01    $ 0.01    $ 0.05    $ 0.11
Net income - basic and diluted    $ 0.01    $ 0.01    $ 0.05    $ 0.11
                 
Weighted average number of common and                
  Series 1 Class A preferred shares outstanding                
  (in thousands)                
  • basic
  644,294   644,417   646,774   511,762
  • diluted
  659,990   653,004   656,893   517,786
                 
                 
Loss ratio   57.6%   63.0%   66.8%   68.6%
Expense ratio   35.3%   36.2%   28.7%   29.0%
Combined ratio    92.9%   99.2%   95.5%   97.6%
                 
                 
Net income    $ 9,208    $ 3,281    $ 32,751    $ 54,123
Other comprehensive income (loss), net of income taxes   2,347   (6,000)   7,065   4,177
Comprehensive income (loss)    $ 11,555    $ (2,719)    $ 39,816    $ 58,300
                 
                 
Book value per common share at December 31            $ 0.65    $ 0.59
                 
                 
                 
                 
    December 31, 2011   December 31, 2010        
                 
Cash and cash equivalents    $ 24,347    $ 32,897        
Investments   1,018,559   993,279        
Other   253,227   244,250        
Total assets    $ 1,296,133    $ 1,270,426        
                 
Total liabilities    $ 878,870    $ 893,102        
Shareholders' equity   417,263   377,324        
Total liabilities and shareholders' equity    $ 1,296,133    $ 1,270,426        

 

SOURCE The Westaim Corporation

For further information:

Jeff Sarfin, Chief Financial Officer
The Westaim Corporation
info@westaim.com
416-203-2253

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The Westaim Corporation

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