Ping An Insurance (Group) the Chinese mainland’s second largest insurer by market value, will continue to its conservative approach in overseas investment and aims to develop into a comprehensive technology-driven financial service provider, the group’s management said on Friday.
Peter Ma, chairman and chief executive officer of Ping An, said the company’s overseas investments comprised 6.8 percent of the portfolio in June this year and they will continue to maintain a conservative approach.
Noting recent regulatory restrictions on financial technology (Fintech), Jessica Tan, chief operating officer and chief information officer at Ping An, said despite tighter regulations in the past year the group had recorded steady growth, relying on good risk management and effective Know Your Client (KYC) and Know Your Product (KYP) strategies in the past six years. Fintech is about finance and finance is about risk management, she added.
The company said the potential listing of its peer to peer lending and online wealth management platform Lufax, which turned profitable in the first half of this year, was in the pipeline. Alex Ren, president of Ping An, said Lufax was positioning itself to be an information service provider, money lender for the poor, wealth manager for the middle class and fund raiser for the government and Belt and Road Initiative groups.
Ping An on Thursday posted net profit of 43.43 billion yuan ($6.51 billion) for the first half this year, the highest 6-month earnings in a decade, as life premiums rose strongly.
Driven by increasing individual customers and continued exploitation of customer value, profit from the company’s individual business amounted to 34.63 billion yuan, up 21.1 percentage points year on year or 79.7 percent of Ping An’s net profit.
New business value generated by the life and health business grew 46.2 percent, driven by the company’s value creation strategy and expanding scale and productivity of sales agents, according to the company.
Ping An’s individual customer base expanded 9.3 percent year on year to 143 million people, and the number of new customers reached 18.54 million, with 6.67 million converted from the company’s internet users.
Ping An Bank’s net profit amounted to 12.56 billion yuan, increasing 2.1 percent year on year. Its retail business accounted for 40 percent of income and 64 percent of profit before tax.
The interim dividend of the company amounted to 50 fen per share, representing an increase of 150 percent year on year.
The share price of Ping An increased 1.43 percent to close at HK$60.20 on Friday; the benchmark Hang Seng Index dropped 1.08 percent to 27,047.57 points.