Insurance Appetite

February 20 (LBO) – One of Sri Lanka’s youngest listed insurance firms, HNB Assurance closed up 8 percent Tuesday after declaring a one-for-two bonus issue following a 51 percent surge in profits for 2006. HNB Assurance closed up 2.50 rupees at 33.50 after peaking at 37 after the bonus announcement. A subsidiary of Hatton National Bank, HNB Assurance’ net profit after tax increased to 91.3 million from 60.2 million rupees in 2006, while gross written premium grew by 36 percent to 1.1 billion rupees, provisional results released to the Colombo Stock Exchange showed.

Company’s total revenue which includes net premium (after ceding to re-insurers) plus investment income was up 41 percent to 924.1 million from 653.7 million rupees in 2005.

In the last quarter gross written premium was up 48 percent to 314.7 million and revenue was up 26 percent to 252 million.

The firm has an issued capital of 250 million rupees and revenue reserves of 200 million, out of which 125 million rupees would be capitalized to issue the bonus shares.