26 Nov 2009

Tower reports strong profit growth

1:41 pm on 26 November 2009

Financial services group Tower is reporting an overall 22% increase in profit to just over $50 million in the year to September.

Tower says its profit was underpinned by sharp growth in its health and life, general insurance and investment arms.

Health and life's profit rose 20% to $31.6m, while profit in general insurance increased 17% to $17.3m.

Those numbers were further bolstered by a turaround in fortunes for the previously sluggish investment business.

Investments accounted for $5.8m of Tower's profit this year, compared to $3.7m last year.

The group's revenue rose nearly 7%, to $517m.

Tower is New Zealand's second-largest health insurer, and says its particular focus this year was to enhance shareholder returns.

In September, the company bolstered its balance sheet with an $81 million share issue

The company declared a final dividend of 9c a share, compared with 8c last year.