Sampo Group’s results for January-March 2023


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SAMPO PLC                        INTERIM STATEMENT          10 May 2023 at 9:35 am

Sampo Group’s results for January-March 2023

• Strong premium growth of 5 per cent for the Group despite adverse currency effects, driven by price increases, high retention and progress on key growth initiatives

• Underwriting profit increased by 21 per cent year-on-year to EUR 292 million and the combined ratio improved by 2.2 percentage points to 84.0 per cent

• Profit before taxes was EUR 359 million representing an increase of 30 per cent year-on-year after adjusting for IFRS 9 (277) but a decline on a reported basis (692)

• Sampo’s balance sheet remains strong, with solvency coverage of 208 per cent, including dividend accrual, and financial leverage of 27.2 per cent, net of announced capital returns

• Sampo plc’s Board of Directors has proposed to the AGM that Mandatum is separated from the Group by way of a partial demerger of Sampo plc

Key figures

EURm 1–3/2023 1–3/2022 Change, %
Profit before taxes (P&C Operations) 359 692 -48
  If 337 495 -32
  Topdanmark 63 15 325
  Hastings 10 21 -55
  Holding -45 164
Net profit for the equity holders 271 773 -65
Underwriting result 292 242 21
Earnings per share (EUR) 0.53 1.42 -0.90
Operational result per share (EUR) 0.51 N/A
Return on equity, % 8.6 7.3 1.3
Profit before taxes (adjusted for IFRS 9), EURm* 359 277 30%

The comparison figures for 2022 have been restated for IFRS 17 but not for IFRS 9, meaning some figures, such as investment income, are not fully comparable between the reporting periods. Net profit for the equity holders, EPS and return on equity figures include results from life operations. Mandatum is classified as discontinued operations as of 31 March 2023.
*) To enhance comparability, a Group profit before taxes (P&C operations) figure adjusted for IFRS 9, reflecting market value movements, has been provided for the prior year.
The figures in this report have not been audited.

Sampo Group key financial targets for 2021-2023

  Target 1-3/2023
Group Mid-single digit UW profit growth annually on average 21%
  Group combined ratio: below 86% 84.0%
  Solvency ratio: 170-190% 213% (208% including dividend accrual)
  Financial leverage: below 30% 23.7% (27.2% including announced capital returns)
If Combined ratio: below 85% 82.4%
Hastings Operating ratio: below 88% 93.3%


Sampo has enjoyed a good start to 2023, with solid results across all our operations. Group underwriting profit grew by 21 per cent year-on-year to EUR 292 million and profit before taxes increased by 30 per cent to EUR 359 million, after adjusting for IFRS 9 in the comparison period. I am encouraged by the progress on our organic growth initiatives, both in the Nordics and the UK, where we have capitalised on our strong positions.

Our Nordic P&C operations achieved excellent first quarter results despite wintry weather that continued well into March. The If P&C combined ratio improved by 1.5 percentage points to 82.4 per cent and premiums grew by 6 per cent on a currency adjusted basis, leading to underwriting profit growth of 10 per cent year-on-year. We continued to price ahead of claims inflation, which remained broadly at the same level as in the fourth quarter. The outlook for the If P&C combined ratio has been improved to 82-84 per cent from below 85 per cent.

Looking to our organic growth initiatives in the Nordics, we are seeing good momentum in both personal insurance and in SME. Personal insurance premiums grew by 12 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter, while growth in SME and a strong set of renewals helped Commercial to a 7 per cent currency adjusted increase in GWP. Private property also continued to see good development, building on the momentum in the prior year. Retention rates remain at high levels across all business areas.

In the UK, the market is reacting to the poor profitability reported in 2022. Market wide price increases accelerated over the first quarter, allowing Hastings to deliver 39 per cent local currency premium growth mainly as a result of higher average premiums. Rising prices are also translating into greater customer churn that could create more opportunities to win new business, should prices continue to rise. Meanwhile, the strong momentum continued in the home book, with 36 per cent growth year-on-year to 448,000 customers. However, loss cost trends remain challenging; the first quarter saw adverse weather driving spikes in claims frequency and continued high claims inflation weighed on Hastings’ margins.

The volatility in the capital markets continued during the first quarter but Sampo’s investment teams navigated this expertly. The Group has very limited exposure to many key risk areas, such as commercial real estate, and Mandatum saw EUR 291 million of net inflows in the first quarter, up 16 per cent year-on-year, despite the uncertain environment. This follows a strong 2022, when it delivered positive net flows in each and every quarter, and illustrates Mandatum’s excellent service and the trust that clients have in the business. In combination with positive market effects, Mandatum’s unit-linked and third-party assets under management grew by 5 per cent to 10.8 billion.

Turning to strategy; following a period of careful deliberation, the Board of Directors of Sampo plc proposed on 29 March 2023 to separate Mandatum from the Group by means of a partial demerger. This would make Sampo a pure play P&C insurance group, in line with our strategy, enabling higher and more resilient returns on capital. However, I believe that the demerger would also benefit Mandatum, by enabling it to pursue growth more ambitiously. The proposal will be considered by the Annual General Meeting on 17 May 2023.

Having held the position since 2009, and been Group CEO before that, this quarterly report is the last with Björn Wahlroos, or “Nalle” as he is usually known, as Sampo’s Chair. I would like to thank Nalle for his huge commitment and contribution to Sampo for over 20 years and, although he leaves on 17 May, Sampo will retain the razor-sharp focus on profitability and value creation that he has instilled in the Group over his time here.

Torbjörn Magnusson
Group CEO


Outlook for 2023

Sampo Group’s P&C insurance operations are expected to achieve underwriting margins that meet the annual targets set for 2021–2023. At Group level, Sampo targets a combined ratio of below 86 per cent, while the target for its largest subsidiary, If P&C, is below 85 per cent. Hastings targets an operating ratio of below 88 per cent. Following strong performance in the first quarter, the outlook for If P&C’s 2023 combined ratio has been improved to 82-84 per cent.

The combined and operating ratios of Sampo Group’s P&C insurance operations are subject to volatility driven by, among other factors, seasonal weather patterns, large claims and prior year development. These effects are particularly relevant for individual segments and business areas, such as the Danish and UK operations.

The net financial result will be significantly influenced by capital markets’ developments. With regard to Topdanmark, reference is made to the profit forecast model that the company publishes on a quarterly basis.

The major risks and uncertainties for the Group in the near-term

In its current day-to-day business activities Sampo Group is exposed to various risks and uncertainties, mainly through its major business units. Major risks affecting the Group companies’ profitability and its variation are market, credit, insurance and operational risks. At the Group level, sources of risks are the same, although they are not directly additive due to the effects of diversification.

Uncertainties in the form of major unforeseen events may have an immediate impact on the Group’s profitability. The identification of unforeseen events is easier than the estimation of their probabilities, timing, and potential outcomes.  Macroeconomic and financial market developments affect Sampo Group primarily through the market risk exposures it carries via its insurance company investment portfolios and liabilities and through strategic investments. Over time, adverse macroeconomic effects could also have an impact on Sampo’s operational business, for example by reducing economic growth or increasing claims costs.

Curbing inflation may force central banks into further rate hikes and to keep interest rates elevated longer than expected. This may lead to both a significant slowdown in economic growth and a deterioration in the debt service capacity of businesses, households and governments. Furthermore, the re-alignment of energy supplies in Europe will take time, raising the prospect of a potential energy crisis, and the war in Ukraine continues to represent a major economic risk. These developments are currently causing significant uncertainties in economic and capital market development. At the same time rapidly evolving hybrid threats create new challenges for states and businesses. There are also a number of widely identified macroeconomic, political and other sources of uncertainty which can, in various ways, affect the financial services industry in a negative manner.

Sampo Group’s insurance exposures in Russia or Ukraine are limited to certain Nordic industrial line clients, with coverage subject to war exclusions. On the asset side, Sampo has no material direct investments in Russia or Ukraine. Given the limited direct exposure, the biggest risk from the war in Ukraine to Sampo relates to the second order capital markets and macroeconomic effects outlined above. There were no material COVID-19 effects in the Group’s insurance operations during the first quarter. Given the limited impact of COVID-19 and the increasing difficulty in reliably estimating associated effects, Sampo has not disclosed quantitative COVID-19 effects in its financial reporting after February 2022.

Other sources of uncertainty are unforeseen structural changes in the business environment and already identified trends and potential wide-impact events. These external drivers may have a long-term impact on how Sampo Group’s business will be conducted. Examples of identified trends are demographic changes, sustainability issues, and technological developments in areas such as artificial intelligence and digitalisation including threats posed by cybercrime.


Sampo reported its first quarter under the new accounting standard “IFRS 17 Insurance Contracts” as well as under “IFRS 9 Financial Instruments”. The comparison figures for 2022 have been restated for IFRS 17 but not for IFRS 9, meaning some figures, such as investment income, are not fully comparable between the reporting periods.

Sampo Group’s P&C operations had a solid start to 2023. Gross written premiums and other income from insurance contracts increased by 5 per cent to EUR 2,986 million (2,849), driven by positive development across the Group.  In the Nordics, the top line growth continued to be good on a currency adjusted basis, due to price increases and continued high retention. The Group saw particularly strong momentum in Private personal insurance, Private property and SME, as well as a strong 1 January renewal, which offset adverse effects from low Nordic new car sales. The premium figures reported by If were negatively affected by unfavourable currency movements, particularly the weakening of the Swedish krona against the Euro. UK premium growth stood out as particularly strong in the first quarter, with a 39 per cent increase on a local currency basis on the back of higher average premiums and continued robust customer growth in home insurance. Total live customer policies in the UK increased by 4 per cent year-on-year.

The Group underwriting result amounted to EUR 292 million (242), representing a year-on-year increase of 21 per cent as the Group combined ratio improved by 2.2 percentage points to 84.0 per cent (86.2). Underwriting profitability was supported by positive development in the Nordics, as first quarter severe weather effects were offset by a positive large claims outcome and the benefit of higher discount rates (year-on-year). If’s adjusted risk ratio improved by 0.3 percentage points year-on-year, excluding discount rate effects. Claims frequencies in the comparison period were somewhat affected by COVID-19 restrictions. In the UK, weather-related frequency claims and continued high claims inflation weighed on margins, leading to an operating ratio of 93.3 per cent (91.3). Sampo targets mid-single digit per cent underwriting profit growth on average and a combined ratio below 86 per cent for 2021-2023.

The first quarter net financial result of EUR 123 million was supported by a rise in equity markets and higher fixed income investment yields relative to the prior year, partly offset by a fall in discount rates, which had a EUR -61 million impact, and the ongoing effect from the unwind of discounting of EUR -60 million. The Holding segment was adversely affected by market value losses of EUR -40 million on Sampo’s stakes in Nexi and Enento.

Sampo Group’s Solvency II coverage stood at 208 per cent, down from 210 per cent at 2022 year-end, as organic capital generation and de-risking actions in Mandatum were offset by a higher Symmetric Adjustment and dividend accrual (based on the proposed regular dividend of EUR 1.80 per share for 2022), Sampo Group’s financial leverage was 23.7 per cent at the end of March 2023, down from 25.6 per cent at the of 2022, mainly as a result of an increase in shareholder equity driven by retained earnings and the transition to IFRS 17. Including the announced capital returns, the financial leverage was 27.2 per cent. Sampo targets a solvency ratio of 170–190 per cent and a financial leverage ratio of below 30 per cent.

On 7 December 2022, the Sampo Board announced a strategic review of Mandatum’s role within the Group. Following an assessment of options, Sampo’s Board resolved on 29 March 2023 to propose to the Annual General Meeting a partial demerger of Sampo plc to separate Mandatum from the Group. Mandatum’s profit before taxes consolidated in the Sampo P&L was EUR 37 million and net profit EUR 28 million in January-March 2023.

On 29 March 2023, Sampo launched a share buyback programme of EUR 400 million as communicated in connection with the full-year results in February. The programme started on 3 April 2023 and will end no later than 1 August 2023. Sampo plc’s Annual General Meeting will be held on 17 May 2023. The Board has proposed on 10 February 2023 to the AGM a dividend of EUR 2.60 per share, of which the regular dividend is EUR 1.80 per share.

Sampo Group results for January-March 2023

EURm If Top-danmark Hastings Holding Elim. Sampo Group
GWP & Other income from insurance contracts 1,966 604 416 2,986
Insurance revenue, net 1,235 318 246 1,799
Claims incurred and claims handling costs, net -829 -203 -163 -1,195
Operating expenses -189 -58 -59 -306
Insurance service result 217 57 25 298
Other P&C insurance related income or expense -6 -6
Underwriting result 217 57 19 292
Net investment income 239 26 14 -22 -3 253
Insurance finance income or expense, net -113 -10 -7 -130
Net financial result 126 17 6 -22 -3 123
Other items -6 -10 -15 -23 -1 -56
Profit before taxes 337 63 10 -45 -5 359
Net profit for the equity holders           271
– of which from life operations           28
Combined ratio, % 82.4 82.2 93.3     84.0

Sampo Group results for January-March 2022

EURm If Top-danmark Hastings Holding Elim. Sampo Group
GWP & Other income from insurance contracts 1,923 597 328 2,849
Insurance revenue, net 1,222 312 184 1,718
Claims incurred and claims handling costs, net -840 -232 -101 -1,173
Operating expenses -185 -54 -55 -294
Insurance service result 197 26 27 250
Other P&C insurance related income or expense -9 -9
Underwriting result 197 26 18 242
Net investment income 57 -43 3 175 -2 190
Insurance finance income or expense, net 243 44 17 304
Net financial result 300 1 19 175 -2 494
Other items -2 -13 -17 -11 -2 -44
Profit before taxes 495 15 21 164 -3 692
Net profit for the equity holders           773
– of which from life operations*           199
Combined ratio, % 83.9 91.5 91.3     86.2

*) Net profit from life operations in January-March 2022 includes Mandatum and Topdanmark’s life operations.

The Interim Statement for January – March 2023, Investor Presentation and a video review with Group CFO Knut Arne Alsaker are available at

Conference call

A conference call for investors and analysts will be arranged at 4 pm Finnish time (2 pm UK time). Please call tel. +1 786 697 3501, +44 (0) 33 0551 0200, +46 (0) 8 5052 0424, or +358 9 2319 5437. 

Conference passcode: Sampo

The conference call can also be followed live at A recorded version will later be available at the same address.

For more information, please contact

Knut Arne Alsaker, Group CFO, tel. +358 10 516 0010
Sami Taipalus, Head of Investor Relations, tel. +358 10 516 0030
Maria Silander, Communications Manager, Media Relations, tel. +358 10 516 0031

Sampo Group will today publish its Sustainability Report for 2022 on Sampo’s Annual Reporting site at

Sampo will publish the Half-Year Financial Report on 9 August 2023.

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