Allianz SE (ALV), Europe’s biggest insurer, expects sales to keep increasing in Spain and Italy while profitability in both countries remains unchanged, according to Chief Financial Officer Oliver Baete.
“Spain is in a very difficult situation but we are outperforming our competitors both in growth and efficiency,” Baete said today as the Munich-based company made presentations to investors in Milan.
Giacomo Campora, chief executive officer of Allianz’s Italian banking unit, said the country’s life-insurance buyers are seeking “safe harbors” and the company’s local sales strategy is paying off.
Italy accounted for 10 percent of Allianz’s operating profit and revenue in 2011, the company said. Allianz, which opened its first Italian branch in 1966, has reduced its holdings of southern European government bonds as the sovereign- debt crisis has worsened.
The company said today that unrealized sovereign-debt losses at the end of the first quarter totaled 1.16 billion euros ($1.4 billion), of which 800 million euros was attributable to Italian debt.
Revenue from Allianz’s Pacific Investment Management Co. unit is helping offset the effect of low interest rates on the company’s life-insurance business, Baete said.
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