Interest in private healthcare in Poland is increasing, with the number of people holding health insurance coverage amounting in 2014 to. 1.2 million, compared to 850 thousand a year earlier. Customers have paid for health insurance PLN 400.9 million (~EUR 94 million), up 19% y-o-y. The most popular are still group insurance, as the Polish Chamber of Insurers (PIU) has recently stated.
Polish insurance giant PZU is mulling the creation of one of Poland's
largest banks which may have assets of over PLN 115 billion. According
to the Puls Biznesu daily, the bank could be created through the
consolidation of two existing lenders on the Polish market - Alior Bank
and Raiffeisen Polbank. It is thought that Bank BPH may also be in PZU's
scope of interest.
The Austrian insurer VIG plans to increase its market share in Poland due to a slight decline of this indicator in 2014. The Austrian Group may resort to M&A in the process, company representatives told the local media in a press conference quoted by the news website THE WARSAW VOICE. "The Polish insurance market is growing more than twice as fast as the Austrian market and VIG Polska is expanding three times faster than the Polish market. (...) We can expect our share in the market to grow", VIG CEO Peter HAGEN said, quoted by THE WARSAW VOICE.
The Polish insurance market preserved in 2014 the downward trend established in the previous year, with GWP recording a 5% decrease (in local currency) of the overall GWP volume (7.65% in euro), to PLN 54.9 billion (EUR 12.89 billion). Life insurance segment continued to see substantial reduction in GWP, although to a less dramatic pace than one year ago (-8.3% in 2014; - 14.06% in 2013 in Polish zloty - PLN).
HanseMerkur, Germany's travel insurance company has been preparing itself to enter the Polish market, Puls Biznesu daily reported. The firm has already employed a Polish manager responsible for the expansion, who specializes in tourism. HanseMerkur has been looking into the Polish market for years.
Eastern Europe's biggest insurer PZU has forecast its return on equity
(RoE) reaching 20 percent in 2020 and sees itself as one of the three
biggest firms in central and eastern Europe in terms of gross written
premiums, Polish state-owned press agency PAP said on Tuesday.
KUPEG, a leader on the Czech market for commercial credit insurance, has opened an office in Warsaw - the capital of Poland. According to the press release published by the company, the Polish office will offer a portfolio of services which includes insurance against the risk of non-payment of receivables from both domestic and foreign customers, as well as enforcement of insured receivables.
Total value of gross premiums written by the Polish insurers in the first three quarters of 2014 amounted to PLN 40.8 billion, recording a 5.77% decrease y-o-y. Claims paid amounted to PLN 25.2 billion, about 10.1% less than a year earlier. The aggregated net profit amounted to PLN 2.65 billion on the life insurance side, up 14% y-o-y, and PLN 3 billion for the non-life insurance business (49% down y-o-y). According to a PIU (Polish Chamber of Insurers) release, this difference has to do primarily with the amount of dividends within the largest Polish insurance group.
The Financial Supervision Authority has issued a permit for the launch
of activity by Pocztowe Towarzystwo Ubezpieczen na Zycie, the life
insurance unit of Polish Post, the watchdog said in a statement on
Wednesday. The subsidiary will start operating in January, Polish Post
said. Artur Olech will be the company's chief executive.
Poland's general insurance industry is benefiting from the country's
"strong and competitive economy and good growth prospects", according to
Standard & Poor's
Polish insurer PZU has received permission from Lithuania's competition
watchdog to buy Lithuanian rival Lietuvos Draudimas AB, PZU said late on
Thursday. Eastern Europe's top insurer, PZU agreed to spin off part of its Lithuanian business to assuage competition concerns. State-run PZU agreed to buy Lietuvos Draudimas as part of a 360-million-euro (USD 457 million) deal struck earlier this year.
Poland's biggest bank PKO BP PKO.WA is confident it can meet its target
of increasing net profit in 2014, despite likely interest rate cuts that
will cut into its margins, PKO Chief Executive Zbigniew Jagiello said
on Thursday. Speaking at the Reuters Eastern Europe Investment
Summit, Jagiello said the bank was less exposed to low rates than in the
past because it now had a bigger share of short-term deposits on its
Eastern Europe's largest insurer PZU may issue subordinated debt before
the end of the year if it secures the approval of the Polish financial
watchdog KNF, the group's deputy head and board member said on Thursday. "In
the next two weeks we will know if we can do that (issue subordinated
bond). And if KNF accepts our interpretation we will go ahead with the
issue already this year," Przemyslaw Dabrowski told reporters.
The Polish market continued to saw in 1H2014 the descending trend recorded in 2013. Thus, overall GWP decreased by 7.4% y-o-y, to PLN 27.7 billion, again driven by the 11.3% decrease in life insurance underwriting. However, due to the Polish zloty appreciation during the last 12 months, the market results look better denominated in euro (EUR 6.7 billion in GWP, 3.67% down y-o-y).
RSA Insurance Group has completed the sale of Link4 Towarzystwo
Ubezpieczen Spolka Akcyjna, its business in Poland, to Powszechny Zaklad
Ubezpieczen sa (PZU), following receipt of formal regulatory approval.
The sales of Lietuvos Draudimas AB (Lithuania) and the business of the
Estonian branch of Codan Forsikring A/S) remains subject to obtaining
relevant regulatory approvals in the respective countries.
Axa Global Direct will continue to look for takeover possibilities in
Poland as it wants to boost its presence in the country, the company's
Chief Executive Officer Stephane Guinet said on Friday. "Axa has a
strong appetite, Poland is among our core strategic markets," Guinet
French insurer AXA acquired for EUR 135 million the insurance arm of
mBank in Poland (BRE Ubezpieczenia), reported REUTERS. Meanwhile, the
two entities have signed a 10-year distribution agreement of AXA
products through bank subsidiaries. Other insurers interested in the
business were GENERALI and ZURICH.
PZU, Poland's biggest insurance group, is to cut jobs affecting up to 2
percent of the workforce in its two core units as part of a plan to
streamline operations, it said on Tuesday. "Job force cuts will
concern up to 230 people in PZU and PZU Zycie, which accounts for 2
percent of the workforce in both companies," PZU said in a statement.
Hyperion broker Howden Broking Group has acquired a majority share in
Polish (re)insurance broker Donoria for an undisclosed sum in order to
expand its European presence, the company announced today (10
Polish insurance group plans to sell subordinated debt by the end of the
year. Polish insurance group PZU plans to sell subordinated debt later
this year after its debut eurobond broke records last month.