We achieved all the financial targets a year in advanced. We announced new and challenging targets, with a close focus on the sustainable value generated for our shareholders.
2015 was a crucial year for Generali. The three-year plan launched in 2013 was formally closed having achieved all of the main financial targets by the end of 2014, i.e. completing the turnaround a year in advance, and having put the Group’s capital back on a sound footing earlier than expected. We reduced and restructured our debt, lowering its cost; we revised the value of our assets and liabilities, carrying out appropriate impairments and bringing the value of our assets into line with their market value; and we strengthened our reserves where necessary.
All of this took place in extremely adverse conditions: growth in the main European economies remains low, interest rates are at a minimum and capital requirements are increasingly stringent.
Annual Integrated Report
Financial Statements 2015 In May 2015 in London we presented investors and market experts with our vision and ambition to become the retail leader in the insurance sector and to be a simpler and smarter Group, placing our customers at the centre of all our activities and becoming more agile and efficient thanks also to the use of data and technologies for providing cutting-edge services, enacting an innovative strategy that truly sets us apart from our competitors. We also announced challenging new financial targets for the next three years with a close focus on the cash and the value generated for our shareholders.
Our commitment to our shareholders remained consistent with the promises and statements made during the presentation of the new strategy also in 2015: the amount of cash generated rose to € 1.6 billion and the dividend rose to € 0.72 per share, significantly higher than the previous year. The payout ratio, i.e. the ratio between the last dividend distributed to shareholders and the consolidated result for the year, was 55.3%.
Our ambition is to pay out a growing and sustainable dividend.
|Dividends (€ m)||311||701||934||1,121|
|Dividend per share (€)||0.20||0.45||0.60||0.72|
Adhesion to voluntary
iniziatives Around 3% of Generali’s share capital is held by socially responsible institutional investors (SRI) who, together with financial analysis, make their investment choices using strict criteria that combine environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) parameters. By way of proof of the widespread interest in the ethical and social implications of our actions, Generali’s shareholders include 136 investors who have signed the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). They hold a total of 18% of the share capital.
Dialogue with the financial community
One of our key strengths is our dialogue with the financial community, which is based on more extensive interaction with investors, financial analysts and rating agencies through meetings, industry conferences and roadshows. As well as the regular financial communications produced to coincide with the publication of the quarterly results, in 2015 there were moments of dialogue in the world’s main financial centres.
Another Investor Day was organised in London in 2015, dedicated to the new Group strategy.
We also maintain an ongoing relationship with analysts, investors and rating agencies focused on sustainability issues, mainly through conference calls and the filling out of questionnaires. We manage numerous requests regarding Group governance and social and environmental policies and performance from operators specialised in ESG analysis for inclusion in the various sustainability indices. We also manage requests from SRI investors to assess whether we satisfy their socially responsible investment criteria.
* Information is taken from a Nasdaq study commissioned by the Generali Group