Q1 Highlights for AEGON UK include:
• Underlying IFRS earnings were £25m, up 178% compared with Q1 2009 due to significant equity and bond market rises and further growth in the business.
• UK life and pensions new business (API) was £235m, an increase of 5% on Q4 2009, although a decrease of 7% on Q1 2009.
Commenting on the UK results, AEGON UK chief executive, Otto Thoresen said:
“This is a solid first quarter performance for AEGON UK. We’ve seen a significant rise in earnings which builds on the encouraging growth we reported in quarter 4 of last year. New business volumes have increased on last quarter showing a continued steady momentum.
“The life and pensions industry faces some key challenges ahead in the form of the retail distribution review and Solvency II. In February, we made changes to our management approach and we are focused on building a strong and resilient business that will succeed in the new economic and regulatory environment. We continue to build the team, with the appointment of Charles Garthwaite as Chief Risk Officer announced last week.
“Against a backdrop of growing pressure on public finances and significant levels of under saving for retirement, pensions policy has to be a key issue for the new Government. AEGON is calling for an end to the continuous changes to tax relief on pension contributions, a review of the arrangements for automatic enrolment and an urgent review into public sector pensions, as the most pressing priorities.
“Political change presents an opportunity to achieve a step change in the savings culture in the UK, which can benefit individuals, the economy and the industry. But we need to get it right. Politicians must not tinker with tax relief in a bid to establish short term fiscal gains, when pensions are in fact part of the long term economic solution for this country.”
For further information on AEGON UK contact:
Lesley McPherson – Head of Media, AEGON UK
0131 549 3782 or 07740 897541
For further information on AEGON N.V. performance:
Dick Schiethart, Media Relations Manager, AEGON N.V.
0031 70 344 8821 or 0031 6 22889925
Notes to Editors
In the UK AEGON offers pensions, life insurance, asset management and financial advice to around 2 million customers. AEGON UK has assets under administration of £56bn billion and employs approximately 4,900 staff.
AEGON is one of the world’s leading insurance groups with approximately 30 thousand employees world wide and 40 million customers in the Americas, Europe and Asia. AEGON's revenue generating assets totalled EUR 361 billion at December 31, 2009.