QUÉBEC, April 4, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - La Capitale Insurance and Financial Group had a positive year, in spite of a difficult economic climate. "Thanks to its achievements in the past year, the Mutual is, once again, pleased to report positive results. Our performance in 2015 attests to the merits of diversifying our activities, which is one of the intrinsic strengths of our organization. By being active in a number of markets, including certain niche markets, La Capitale is better able to spread out risks in the event of unexpected situations or tough economic times," said René Rouleau, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of La Capitale Civil Service Mutual, during the Annual General Assembly held in Quebec City on April 4, 2016.
2015 was marked by an environment of strong market volatility, persistence of low interest rates and unfavourable Group Health and Disability experience. La Capitale is nevertheless able to post consolidated net income of $55.4 million, which represents a 6.4% return on equity. Total equity reached $895 million. In 2015, a total amount of $12.6 million was paid in dividends to policyholders, up slightly from the previous year. La Capitale's total consolidated revenue, which is derived from premiums, investment income and other factors, hit $2 billion. Its consolidated assets rose to $5.8 billion, representing a 5.7% increase.
Life and Health Insurance and Financial Services
For the last five years, La Capitale has been Canada's leader in Life and Health insurance premium growth, with an increase of approximately 65%. La Capitale took this giant step forward in a difficult economic environment. In this context, the Life and Health Insurance and Financial Services sector again contributed to the Mutual's profitability, although to a lesser degree than in previous years. In 2015, the sector was able to record net income of $14.6 million, while its consolidated revenue from premiums increased by 7.4%, reaching close to $1.1 billion.
"Although it had its share of challenges in 2015, the Life and Health Insurance and Financial Services sector continued to hold its own in a highly competitive market. Our desire to remain among the key players in the industry and strengthen our market position is stronger than ever," declared Steven Ross, President and Chief Operating Officer of La Capitale's Life and Health Insurance and Financial Services sector.
Property and Casualty Insurance
The Property and Casualty Insurance sector, which includes La Capitale General Insurance, L'Unique General Insurance and Unica Insurance, had an excellent year. 2015 was marked by record profitability with consolidated net income of $40.8 million, representing a 13.4% return on equity. L'Unique General Insurance achieved the highest profit level in its history, thanks to improved property loss experience and factors leveraged to ensure profitable growth in commercial insurance and surety bonds. All of our Property and Casualty insurance companies ended 2015 with a consolidated gross written premium volume of $880.9 million, a $21.1 million increase over the previous year.
"We plan to continue to focus on what's essential to our clients, while rewarding their loyalty," said Constance Lemieux, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Property and Casualty Insurance sector and of La Capitale General Insurance.
New Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer
During the Annual General Assembly, the next Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of La Capitale Civil Service Mutual was introduced to the mutual members. Jean St-Gelais, who joined the Board of Directors in 2015, succeeds René Rouleau, who announced his retirement after completing three terms in this role since 2009.
Before joining La Capitale, Mr. St-Gelais held such positions as Secretary-General and Clerk of the Quebec government's executive council, President and CEO of Revenu Québec (RQ) and President and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF). His abilities and vast expertise will serve as valuable assets to La Capitale in the years to come. Mr. St-Gelais will officially take up his new position on May 2.
About La Capitale
La Capitale Financial Group, created in 1940, has a strong presence across Quebec and throughout Canada. With over 2,690 employees and guided by the values of mutualism on which it was founded, La Capitale works with clients to build, protect and value what they feel counts for their financial security. It offers insurance products and financial services to the general public, as well as to Quebec public service employees. With assets of $5.8 billion, La Capitale occupies a choice position among leading insurers in Canada.
SOURCE La Capitale Financial Group Inc.
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