W&W with a good start to the year

Profit higher than forecast and the previous year – strong construction financing business

The Wüstenrot & Württembergische Group (W&W) has had a good start to the new year. The specialist for financial provisions recorded good new business figures and positive profit development during the first three months of 2015. At 54.7 million euros (previous year: 54.2 million euros), the Group’s consolidated net profit is slightly higher than the value of the first quarter 2014 and also slightly higher than expected. The pre-tax results rose to EUR 88.7 million (previous year: EUR 74.2 million). For the current business year, the W&W Group continues to expect that IFRS net income will amount to about 200 million euros after tax. This presupposes that no extraordinary liabilities will be incurred, particularly as a result of extreme damage claims or unforeseeable changes in the capital markets.

Wüstenrot Bausparkasse maintained a good level of net new business during the first quarter, despite the tense market situation, with a home loan savings volume of a scant 3.6 billion euros, which was similar to the previous year. The net new business volume, which is available after the gross new business volume is known, was slightly below last year’s amount at 2.6 billion euros (previous year 2.8 billion euros). Overall, Wüstenrot has further strengthened its position as number 2 in the sector.

Construction financing business produced very positive results during the first quarter. Throughout the entire Group, the volume rose by around one quarter to ca. 1.3 billion euros (previous year: 1.05 billion euros). As the Group continued to focus on more profitable offers, it was possible to exploit the generally positive development in the construction financing business in Germany even more. One significant driver of this positive development was the brokering activity for other banks via the construction financing platform, which was established in 2014. The new business volume rose here by around 65 per cent to 193 million euros.

Insurance stable at a high level

In the Insurance business area, the gross premiums written for personal insurance from Württembergische fell slightly in comparison to the previous year during the first three months to around 577 million euros (previous year: 596 million euros). This was above all due to the drop in single premiums. In this segment the W&W Group continued to follow a conservative underwriting policy. With regard to damage and accident insurance, however, the Group managed to increase gross premiums written significantly by more than four per cent to 773 million euros (previous year: 743 million euros). Positive development was achieved above all in the motor vehicle segment.

Dr Alexander Erdland – Chairman of the Executive Board of W&W AG: "The first quarter of 2015 highlights the solid market position of the W&W Group, which we have gained over the past few years despite continually low interest rates and the cost arising from significantly more stringent regulatory requirements. This situation will now allow us to increase our investments in new services and products, which in turn will help us to maintain the quality of our services and thus the satisfaction of our customers."