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Trading statements

Just Retirement new business sales up 41%

05 November 2015 08:01

Just Retirement Group saw continued progress in both individual and group business in the first quarter.

The group said it achieved total new business sales of £359.9m in the three months to the end of September, 41% higher than a year ago.

Total defined benefit de-risking (DB) sales were £103.6m, more than four times Q1 14/15 and the group today announces three further notable DB sales totalling £269m completed in October, two of which represent the largest transactions we have achieved in this segment so far. As a result the group expects to write approximately £500m of DB sales in H1 2015/16.

Guaranteed Income for Life (GIfL) sales were 7% higher than the comparative period in 2014, and as indicated in our 17 September results announcement, were up 26% compared to Q4 2014/15 (the immediately preceding quarter), reflecting the ongoing customer need for these key retirement planning products.

Lifetime mortgage advances of £114.4m represented an increase of 42% on Q1 14/15.

The group also said it was pleased to have completed its equity capital raising on 16 October and to have received CMA phase 1 approval. The proposed merger with Partnership Assurance Group remains on track for completion in December, subject to PRA and shareholder approval.

Group chief executive Rodney Cook said: "I am delighted to be able to report continued progress in both individual and group business. We have delivered further strong growth in DB De-risking, and the GIfL segment is showing continuing signs of recovery. A 41% increase in total sales confirms that our business is in good shape. "The DB De-risking team has again delivered real success, with more than a 300% increase in sales. The transactions announced today, including the £269m in October, take our DB De-risking business to over £1bn of sales since inception just over 2 years ago, which is a huge achievement. "The 7% increase in our GIfL sales shows that the market is returning to this product, which continues to offer value for the majority of middle Britain consumers. For the first time our Q1 total Retirement Sales also benefit from our new propositions in both the UK and South Africa. Although it is early days for both initiatives, we believe there is real potential to satisfy customer needs in each area. "Overall, I remain positive about the outlook. In addition to our increased expectations for our DB business, we also believe that the improvement in GIfL sales is sustainable. "These results mean we enter the proposed merger with Partnership Assurance Group with momentum, and I very much look forward to what we can achieve over the remainder of 2015/16 and beyond. I am more convinced than ever that we will be stronger together with Partnership, and that the best is yet to come."

At 8:01am: (LON:JRG) Just Retirement Group PLC share price was +8.05p at 168.55p

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