New Codan pension product beats expectations

DENMARK – Danish insurance group Codan says sales of its new personal pension product have “exceeded expectations” and that profits at its life and pensions division have surged.

The company introduced the Time Pension - which “combines the security of guaranteed pensions with the long-term high returns on shares” – in September 2002.

“The new product has been well received by many customers and Time Pension sales in the first months exceeded expectations,” it said. The product accounted for 40% of its new personal pension business in December.

Its life and pension insurance business saw its profit boosted to 333 million crowns (44.8 million euros) compared to a 70 million-crown (9.4 million euro) profit in 2001 “thanks to a favourable investment return of 4.2%”.

But, overall, the Copenhagen-based company reported an aggregate loss for 2002 of 202 million crowns before tax and goodwill amortisation for 2002, compared to a loss of 334 million crowns in 2001.

"I am quite satisfied with the return on investments and the favourable results for life and pension insurance, but general insurance results are certainly nothing to write home about,” said chief executive Jens Erik Christensen.

Christensen said that the company believes that the prospects for 2003 are good as it has brought expenses under control and raised some premiums.

“In spite of the difficult conditions in 2002, we are therefore ready to face the challenges of 2003," Christensen says.

Codan has a seven percent share of Sweden’s life and pensions insurance market.

“Life and pension insurance generated gross earned premiums of a total of 3.1 billion crowns in 2002, with company pension schemes accounting for 64% and personal pension schemes for 36%.”

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