A significant profits recovery is on the cards at life insurer Hansard Global (HSD). The Isle of Man-based £121.8 million cap is set to record a £15.8 million pre-tax profit for the year to July 2015, according to broker Panmure Gordon, after litigation, the closure of its European business and provisions for higher tax charges saw profits retrench 22.4% to £8.3 million in 2014. The loss of a major distribution deal in Japan also hit the insurer, reducing new business profit to £3.3 million from £22 million a year earlier.
Panmure’s dividend forecast of 8.8p a share this year puts the stock on a prospective 9.4% yield, rising to 9.8% in 2016. The broker’s 11.1p earnings per share forecast puts Hansard on 8.3 times earnings in 2015.
The launch of a new sales strategy designed to rejuvenate growth is enjoying early success. Hansard, which specialises in tax-efficient products held in life assurance wrappers, has signed agreements with 33 new independent financial adviser networks meaning more than 200 additional brokers will be selling its products globally.
It will take time for these agreements to hit Hansard’s profit and loss account, with Panmure Gordon forecasting sales of £12.9 million in the first quarter of 2015, 30% lower than in the same period a year earlier.