The Italian Allianz Group company Ras has increased its net profit by 25% in 2004, resulting in the board proposing a E0.80 dividend. The company attributed the rise to growth across a number of sectors, particularly in its Life business.

In 2004, net profit grew by a quarter on 2003 to E691 million, with return on equity (ROE) at 15.2% and return on risk-adjusted capital (RORAC) at 20.2%, both making significant progress on the prior-year indicators.

In the fourth quarter alone, net profit improved by 34%, from E90 million to E121 million. The group combined ratio also improved, to 98.9% from 100.8% in 2003.

2004 was Ras’ best year yet as regards profitability, commented Ras CEO Mario Greco. The results achieved in this important first year for our three-year plan are better than expected, bringing us even closer to our 2006 targets, many of which can be reached at the end of 2005.