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Profits at Fortis UK fall 68%

Fortis (Insurance UK) has posted a pre-tax profit of £8.4m for the first half of the year, compared to a £26m profit for the same time in 2009.

Fortis says its results were hit by industry wide issues such as the severe weather seen in January, poor private car market performance, and lower realised capitalised gains compared to last year.

The protection business made a loss of £2m, up from a loss of £4.3m last year.

Fortis says its UK protection arm is making good progress since it was launched in July 2008.

For the first half of 2010 Fortis reported new annual premiums of £10.6m, up from £6.4m last year.

Based on data from the Association of British Insurers for Q2 Fortis has a 5.1 per cent share of the protection market.

Fortis’ half-year results also factor in £3.4m in set-up costs for its new partnership with Tesco Bank. Fortis owns a 50.1 per cent stake in Tesco Bank’s new insurance business, Tesco Underwriting, and says the business is on track to start trading by the end of the year.

Chief executive Barry Smith (pictured) says: “I am pleased that Fortis has delivered a robust set of results despite the continuing difficult environment. Our income growth is strong, thanks to our multi-distribution strategy and we have demonstrated our aim to grow further with the acquisition of Kwik-Fit Insurance Services and continuing new business wins.

“Following a challenging first quarter for the whole industry, we are now seeing improvements in our profit and ratio performance and expect to see further improvement during the rest of the year.”

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