LifeStar Holding plc - Full Year Results & Dividend Recommendation

On 24 March the Board of Directors of Global Financial Services Group published the preliminary statement of annual results for the year ended 31 December 2005.

Commissions and fees receivable increased by Lm620,507 or 25.2% to Lm3.1 million with the balance on the long term business of insurance technical account increasing from Lm184,986 in 2004 to Lm786,912 in the period under review. In 2005, there was an increase in the value of in-force business of Lm315,000 compared to Lm196,000 in 2004.

Whilst the Group recognised gains on investment property amounting to Lm432,412 in 2004, no similar gains were recorded in 2005. Group administrative expenses increased by 19.5% to Lm1.8 million with commissions payable and direct marketing costs amounting to Lm453,359, representing a rise of 40.1% over the previous year. The Group’s operating profit amounted to Lm1.7 million (2004: Lm1.3 million).

After taking into account net investment income of Lm0.9 million, the Group’s profit before tax during 2005 amounted to Lm2.6 million, 87.1% higher than the pre-tax profit of Lm1.4 million generated in 2004. Group profit for the year of Lm1.6 million translates into an earnings per share figure of 12c2 (2004: 8c0).

Shareholders’ funds increased by 12.3% in 2005 to Lm11.2 million resulting in a net asset value per share of Lm0.848.
Following the payment of an interim gross dividend of 1c5 per share (net: 0.975c per share) in August 2005, the Board of Directors is recommending the payment of a final gross dividend of 1c5 per share (net: 0.975c per share) and a special gross dividend of 3c per share (net: 1c95 per share), for the approval of the shareholders at the next Annual General Meeting due on 24 May 2006. This net dividend of 2c925 per share will be payable to shareholders who are on the Register of Members of the Company on 24 April 2006.

In the financial review the Board of Directors commented “the significant increase in returns and shareholder value reflect the Group’s commitment to innovation, variety of products and a quality service. The positive results provide further encouragement to build on this result, deliver strong results and further growth to meet the expectations of clients and shareholders alike”.

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