May 17, 2013 (LBT) - Composite insurer Amãna Takaful PLC (ATPLC) posted modest growth in all aspects of the business in Q1 2013. Releasing their interim results, the company reported that consolidated Revenue of Rs. 463.4 million grew by 15% over Q1/2012 with profit before tax of Rs. 22.9 million, an increase of 55% in the same comparison.
Amidst many challenges, Non-Life business kept pace with the industry and grew by 10% to Rs. 357 million in which all classes delivered product-line profitability, notably Motor. Prudent and speedy management of motor claims and its supply chain continue to impact positively among all stakeholders. Consequently the combined ratio too improved substantially to 86% from 98% a year ago.
Gross Written Premium of the Life segment improved significantly to Rs. 105.8 million or 34% over the corresponding period in 2012, over-performing industry growth performance of 7% (Source IASL). New Business performance on Regular products and Prosper - the Wealth Management offer, took a major share of this increase.
Lacklustre performance in the white-listed equities coupled with volatility in bullion virtually halved investment income to Rs. 22 million compared to the corresponding quarter in 2012. Importantly, a 46% improvement in the Under-writing result at Rs. 134.7 million helped to mitigate the under-performance in investment income.
“The start to 2013 was extremely volatile and highly charged due to un-warranted and extraneous influences that adversely impacted our client base and trading partners. This was exacerbated by intense price cutting. Nonetheless, we stayed the course and weathered the storm, growing on par with industry while defending our market share,” said CEO Fazal Ghaffoor, commenting on the first quarter performance.
“It is heartening that our strategy to deliver sustainable growth in our people’s performance, our quest for a balanced portfolio and real achievements on the productivity front while delivering real value to our customers, is well on track to achieve the desired outcomes,” he concluded.
Meanwhile, Amãna Takaful Group, which also includes Amãna Takaful Maldives reported first Quarter profit of Rs. 41.3 million. “The Groups first quarter results are a good start to the year, despite the challenging trading environment more particularly here at home. The operation in the Maldives is progressing steadily on all fronts”, commented Chairman Tyeab Akbarally. “While great and real opportunities are yet to be fully optimised with prudent risk management and innovative product offers in our pipeline, I remain optimistic of our growth momentum. For sure, the industry has to get its act together in responsible tariff management practices” the Chairman concluded.
The company’s re-fashioned strategic route map to build sustainable balanced growth and profits has begun to deliver results. The plan took flight last year and reached grass root levels in the organisation together with the establishment of new branches, refurbishment of existing locations and leveraging information communication technology to boost service at customer touch-points. One of a few ISO certified insurance operators in Sri Lanka, Amãna Takaful now operates in 22 locations with plans of expanding its footprint further. ATPLC also operates three key strategic business units that specialise in Life, General and Medical Takaful, which is unique in its approach to serve the respective developing customer segments. Furthermore, by keeping to its tenet of mutuality, the company also offers financial protection through the Takaful concept to the needy of the Sri Lankan populace by providing Navodhaya - ATPLC’s Micro-Takaful (insurance) solution.
The current Board of Amãna Takaful PLC includes, Tyeab Akbarally (Chairman), Ehsan Zaheed (Executive Director), Non-Executive Directors - Osman Kassim, Dr A. A. M. Haroon, Dr T. Senthilverl, Dr Ifthikar Ismail and Non-Executive Independent Directors M. H. M. Rafiq, Dato’ Fadzli Yusof, A. S. M. Muzzamil, Ali Sabry and, R. Gopinath.
Sokoto — Wealthy Muslims in the country have been reminded on the need to always ensure they carry out the religious duty of paying the compulsory Zakat to the poor.
Chairman of the Sokoto State Zakat and Endowment Committee Alhaji Lawal Maidoki told newsmen in Sokoto at the weekend that regular payment of zakat could enhance socio-economic wellbeing of the downtrodden and check poverty in the society.
"The payment of zakat is compulsory upon any Muslim whose wealth in terms of cash, treasures, farm produce and livestock, among others has reached the prescribed amount and within a period of twelve consecutive months", he said. The chairman said Governor Aliyu Wamakko has given some livestock to the committee as part of his zakat for animals.
"This is the first time we received animals as zakat from any individual", he said. He described the gesture as highly encouraging and commendable".
He added that the governor is also the sole financier of the committee's activities and its district-level counterparts in the 63 districts of the 23 local governments of the state.
Maidoki called on wealthy people in the state to take a cue from this, saying refusal to pay zakat attracts negative consequences.
Turkey’s Islamic banks maintained their upward momentum in the first quarter of 2013, continuing a trend that began last year, according to an association of the lenders.
The Participation Banks Association of Turkey (TKKB) said Turkey’s four Islamic lenders, also known as participation banks, raised 53.1 billion Turkish Liras in funds in the first three months of the year, an 8 percent increase compared to the same period last year. The banks yielded 226 million liras in net profit in the first three months of the year.
Islamic banks operate in compliance with Islamic financial rules which ban interest. Along with the rising presence of Islamic-compliant financial instruments in the global financial markets, Turkey’s Islamic banks benefited from decreasing confidence in regular lenders in the wake of the global crisis.
“The share of participation banking overall banking sector fell to 1 percent in 2011. We raised it to 6 percent in 2012. Out growth is on the upturn,” Albaraka CEO Fahrettin Yahşi told Anatolia agency yesterday. Turkey’s four participation banks, Albaraka, Bank Asya, Kuveyt Türk and Türkiye Finans, have 836 branches among them across the country.
The Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME), Britain's largest standalone Islamic bank, is targeting 15 percent growth in assets this year, with plans for a Dubai office to help boost its capital markets and wealth management offerings.
BLME plans to have a presence in the emirate's offshore financial district later this year to attract regional business from countries such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia, chief executive Humphrey Percy told Reuters in an interview.
"Our Dubai office will help identify opportunities for club transactions, syndications and for our wealth management offering," Percy said.
There are no plans for seeking a full branch licence or a presence in other countries, he added.
BLME, which offers corporate banking and wealth management services, has carved a niche in middle-market transactions while benefiting from limited Gulf-based competitors and reduced activity from large British banking groups, he said.
The bank expects double-digit asset growth in coming years, with its balance sheet growing past 1 billion pounds ($1.6bn) by December 2012, up from 807 million pounds in 2011.
"We target 15 percent growth in assets this year, with ambitious targets from there onwards."
The bank was founded in 2006 with the backing of Kuwaiti investors, including Boubyan Bank, which held 21.8 percent of BLME shares as of December 2012.
The bank returned to profitbality in 2012, posting a net operating profit of 5.5 million pounds, after a 10.8 million loss in 2011.
Focus areas include healthcare, transportation and real estate, where BLME is further diversified across property development, investment holdings and residential financing.
"At this point in the cycle, real estate development is attractive and showing good results," he added.
The bank holds over $100m in assets under management across a range of Islamic funds, including a fixed income fund rated A by Moody's.
In October, Australian fund manager Crescent Wealth appointed BLME as the investment sub-adviser to its Islamic cash fund