esure Group PLC (LON:ESUR) saw its shares gain 2% on Wednesday as the insurer reported strong growth in 2017 profit, driven by a footprint expansion in motor policies.
The FTSE 250-listed firm said its full-year pre-tax profit increased by 35.6% to £98.6mlnm, up from £72.7mln a year earlier.
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The group's gross written premiums rose by 25.2% to £820.2mln, up from £655.0mln in 2016, as more customers were attracted to esure’s "excellent products at competitive prices."
esure said it exceeded its premium growth expectations for the year with an increase of 25.2% to 820.2mln
Darren Ogden, the insurer's interim chief executive officer, said: “During 2017, we increased in-force policies by 9% to 2.373mln. Our footprint expansion in Motor continues to build momentum and we now have over 300,000 in-force policies in these new segments.”
He concluded: “We continue to deliver profitable growth and remain on track for our three million in-force policy target by 2020.”
The group is paying an unchanged full-year dividend of 13.5p a share, inclusive of a special dividend and said the payout is 31% higher after adjusting for the impact of price comparison business Gocompare.com which was spun-off last year.
In early morning trading, esure shares were 2% higher at 228.8p.