Admiral sees "fun" profit growth

05-09-2006

Insurance firm Admiral has seen its first half profits grow by 24 per cent.

The group's pre-tax profits increased to a record £68.7 million, a substantial improvement on the first half performance in 2005 of £55.6 million.

Having surpassed expectations the board issued a dividend of 12.1p per share, showing itself to have overcome a market currently beset by competitive low prices.

"Despite high levels of competition in the UK motor insurance market our business continues to grow and grow profitably," Admiral chief executive Henry Engelhardt said.

"We're very pleased with our results for the first half of 2006. We met the needs of our customers, made money and had fun doing it."

Looking to the future, the group's chairman, Alastair Lyons, commented that "our policy remains only to retain within the business what funds we need to provide a prudent contingency and support our plans for growth".

Admiral's new consumer advice website, Confused.com, saw "significant growth in both numbers of quotas and contribution". It contributed a significant proportion of the group's improvement in profits, increasing from £2.3 million last year to £8.7 million this year.

The group was launched in 1993 and floated on the London Stock Exchange ten years later.

Despite today's impressive results, Admiral's share price fell by 0.37 per cent on early morning trading.


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