The specialist financial mutual for doctors, dentists, lawyers and teachers, has increased assets under management to a record £7bn (2015: £6.2bn).
The Wesleyan has just announced its results for the year to 31 December 2016.
Other results highlights include:
- 16.9% gross return on the With Profits Fund (2015: 2.3%);
- launch of new unit trust investment funds increased Unit Trust Funds by 26%;
- financial strength has also improved, with Group Fund for Future Appropriations increasing to £635m (2015: £602m);
- Wesleyan Bank provided £201m in commercial loans and £15m in personal loans in 2016;
- 98% of all income protection claims were paid out (industry average: 91%**);
- Practice Plan/DPAS achieved operating profit of £6.5m.
Wesleyan Group Chief Executive Craig Errington said: “These are a strong set of results for a year that was full of uncertainty. Our investments in particular had a stellar year, with our assets under management reaching an unprecedented £7 billion.
“Although the FTSE ended the year at a record high, there was still significant volatility in the markets, before and after the EU referendum that our investments team had to negotiate. It is a testament to their ability that our With Profits Fund rose by almost 17 per cent last year. This outperformed both the FTSE 100 and the FTSE All Share indices, meaning our With Profits policyholders continued to benefit from competitive long term payouts. In fact, this performance takes our five year cumulative return to 63%.
“The ongoing success of Wesleyan Group’s subsidiaries is also pleasing. Wesleyan Bank fully integrated Syscap last year and demonstrated an increase in longer term commercial lending. Meanwhile, Practice Plan and DPAS, in their first full year together, collected dental plan payments valued at more than £163 million***, a 9 per cent increase on 2015. They also increased the numbers of patients on plan to more than 900,000.
“The Society’s operating profit was in line with expectations and we saw growth in the pensions business, showing retirement planning is still integral to how we work with customers.”
He added: “There has been an increased demand for financial advice in recent years and we are seeing a number of financial services companies reverting to sales force models, emulating our own successful formula.”
Wesleyan Chairman Bryan Jackson CBE added: “Last year we made further progress towards the delivery of our growth objectives. We made some changes to our organisational model in 2016 to make us more scalable and more supportive of our business structure. This has allowed us to further increase our focus on our customers and to be more efficient.
“Wesleyan has a clear vision to be the best in our chosen markets and has a comprehensive strategy in place that clearly articulates what we must do to progress towards our vision. We still have more to do, but there are major initiatives launching in 2017 that will deliver increased effectiveness and an improved customer experience.
“We are also incredibly proud to have raised more than £350,000 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital in the final year of our charity partnership. This brings the total to almost £1 million raised over the past four years, which culminated in the opening of the groundbreaking Magnolia House facility earlier this year.”