AIA reports quarterly new business up 55pc; shares rally
CEO Mark Tucker will step down but remain as non-executive director in June before taking over as HSBC chairman in October
AIA, one of the largest insurers in Asia, reported the value of its new business grew 55 per cent to US$884 million for the three months to February, according to a company filing with the stock exchange on Thursday.
The company said new business grew well in Hong Kong, Malaysia and in particular mainland China while that in Thailand underperformed.
“AIA continues to deliver a strong track record of year-on-year growth and our dedicated teams remain highly focused on building a high-quality, sustainable business for the long term,” chief executive and president Mark Tucker said in the announcement.
Tucker will step down in June but remain as non-executive director until the end of August. HSBC Holdings has announced that Tucker will become its chairman from October, replacing Douglas Flint.
Ng Keng Hooi, currently regional chief executive, will succeed Tucker as group chief executive and president.
“The powerful and structural economic, social and demographic changes taking place across Asia present an unparalleled opportunity for AIA,” Tucker said.
“The compounding benefits of economic growth and increasing wealth are leading to higher life insurance penetration rates, highlighting the growth potential for AIA. We remain highly confident in the group’s prospects and our ability to deliver long-term sustainable value creation for our shareholders.”
Shares in AIA rose 6.2 per cent to close at HK$54.50 on Thursday following the announcement. The stock was the most actively traded with HK$4.4 billion worth of shares changing hands.