Insurance giant's profit celebration

AXA'S Ipswich workforce was today celebrating double good news as the global giant announced a startling 23per cent jump in earnings.On the day the insurance company's 1,200 Ipswich staff heard of a massive £10million investment in its offices in the town, AXA's management board chairman Henri de Castries announced adjusted earnings rose 23% during 2005 to reach 4.

AXA'S Ipswich workforce was today celebrating double good news as the global giant announced a startling 23per cent jump in earnings.

On the day the insurance company's 1,200 Ipswich staff heard of a massive £10million investment in its offices in the town, AXA's management board chairman Henri de Castries announced adjusted earnings rose 23% during 2005 to reach 4.1billion euros - about £2.9billion.

The company described its 2005 performance as “very strong” and it followed another solid performance in 2004, which saw adjusted earnings double to about £2billion.

Today Mr de Castries, who visited AXA's Ipswich headquarters in Civic Drive in October last year, said: “Last year, AXA showed strong growth momentum, particularly in Life & Savings and Asset Management.


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“Significant value has been created in 2005 for our shareholders, as demonstrated by the record performance achieved this year.

“Our company-wide project Ambition 2012 was launched in 2005, establishing the objective of becoming the preferred company in our industry through customer satisfaction. We believe that we can achieve our 2012 goals by differentiating ourselves through employee engagement, a superior product offering, and excellent distribution.

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“AXA's 2005 results show that we are off to a good start in meeting these aspirational objectives.”

AXA said its proposed dividend of Euro 0.88 per share was up 44% on 2004 and the total assets under management by the company rose to a record level in 2005 to Euro 1,064billion - about £724million.

AXA's strong global performance was mirrored in the company's UK and Ireland arm where adjusted earnings rocketed by 63% on 2004 to £319million.

Dennis Holt, AXA UK Group chief executive, said: “In 2005 we have reaped the benefits of investment in the restructure of our UK businesses, successfully growing market share through product enhancement and quality customer service.

“In 2006 we continue to focus on profitable growth. To win in a challenging competitive environment, we shall maintain our underwriting discipline, keep a firm control of costs and build on our strong market positions in Investment, Life, General and Health Insurance businesses.”

Weblink: www.axa.com

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