Welcome to our shareholder update - April 2020
In this edition of our shareholder update, you can read about:
- Chairman’s update
- 2019 financial results
- Details for our 2020 Annual General Meeting
- Business response to COVID-19
- Aviva Foundation – British Red Cross partnership
The coronavirus pandemic seems to have turned the world upside down. Aviva’s purpose, to be with you today for a better tomorrow, has never felt more important for us. It has guided our people as they have worked hard to look after each other, and our customers. I have often in the past referred to the Aviva family, and I have never felt more proud than I do now of the dedication of our people in offices all around the world.
We have focused in the last weeks on protecting our people and our financial strength and resilience while ensuring that we remain operationally ready to serve our customers. We are not overlooking our responsibility to our communities either. You will find in this update more information about how we are responding and in particular how we have increased our contribution, in part thanks to the Aviva Foundation, to our long-standing partners the British Red Cross, to help vulnerable people both in the UK and globally.
Our financial results feel like a long time ago now, but as we reported then, an important feature was our capital position that has stood us in good stead for the recent market turmoil. You will find more about our numbers in this update. You will also find more information about the Board of Directors' decision to withdraw its recommendation to pay the 2019 final dividend to ordinary shareholders in June 2020. It was not a decision we took lightly, but the Board agreed with the view of our regulators that it was prudent at this time.
There is still much uncertainty around COVID-19 affecting all aspects of our lives and things will not feel normal for a long time. This uncertainty is affecting plans for our AGM where our priority will be doing the right thing for everyone’s health and well-being. Information about our current plans can be found below.
As you know, on 21 January I announced my intention to retire as Chairman later this year. This AGM will be my last for Aviva. I could not have imagined that my last update to you all would have been in such circumstances. I will be very sad to be moving on. And yet I know that my successor will be taking over a truly special company. Our heritage is unique, and I have no doubt whatsoever we will emerge from this time of global crisis, just as we have done before, strong and ready to be there for our customers and you, our shareholders.
Thank you all for your continued support for Aviva. I wish you all the very best for today and for a better tomorrow.
Sir Adrian Montague - Chairman
2019 full year results
In 2019, we set out our priorities and financial targets, strengthened our leadership team and remained focused on helping our customers prepare for a better future. We’ve made good progress, but there is much more to do.
2019 results at a glance:
Operating Profit – up 6% to £3,184m (FY 2018: £3,004m)
Solvency II Cover Ratio – up 2pp to 206% (FY 2018: 204%)
Operating EPS – Up 8% to 60.5p (FY 2018: 56.2p)
Aviva update on solvency position
On 17 March 2020, Aviva participated in the annual Morgan Stanley Financial Services Conference, where Jason Windsor discussed our 2019 results and provided an update on our capital position in light of the impact of COVID-19 and recent volatility in the financial markets.
Update on COVID-19 and 2019 final dividend
Aviva announced on 8 April 2020 that the Board of Directors had agreed to withdraw its recommendation to pay the 2019 final dividend to ordinary shareholders in June 2020. The Board fully recognises the importance of cash dividends to all of our ordinary shareholders and expects to reconsider any distributions to ordinary shareholders in the fourth quarter of 2020.
2019 Annual report and accounts
2019 was a year of change for Aviva. We reshaped our strategy and senior leadership team, while also facing a period of uncertainty in the external business environment.
Update on senior manager remuneration
Aviva announced on 16 April 2020 changes to the remuneration of Executive Directors and the Aviva Leadership Team.
The 2020 Annual General Meeting
This year’s AGM is scheduled to be held on Tuesday, 26 May 2020 at 1.30pm at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre (QEII Centre), Broad Sanctuary, Westminster, London SW1P 3EE.
The COVID-19 pandemic is more than likely to affect the format of our AGM this year, and our priority is to ensure the health and wellbeing of all stakeholders. We recognise that the current government guidance prohibits all non-essential travel and the gathering of more than 2 people from different households (the Stay at Home Measures). We fully support the Stay at Home Measures, and therefore shareholders should not attend the AGM in person this year.
We strongly urge you to register your vote in advance of the meeting remotely by proxy by:
- Voting online – you can appoint a proxy and register your voting instruction online by visiting www.investorcentre.co.uk/eproxy
- Voting by post – you can appoint a proxy and register your voting instruction by returning your completed Form of Proxy to Computershare Investor Services PLC, The Pavilions, Bridgwater Road, Bristol BS99 6ZY.
Proxy appointments must be received no later than 1.30pm on Thursday, 21 May 2020.
You can also send your questions for the Board of directors to firstname.lastname@example.org, which we will look to answer, where possible, as part of the proceedings.
Please see www.aviva.com/AGM for further information and updates to the current position.
We are seeing extraordinary efforts in the global fight against coronavirus, particularly from healthcare workers on the frontline saving lives. Find out how Aviva is supporting our employees, customers and communities at this challenging time.
British Red Cross partnership
Since the outbreak of COVID-19, we've committed to an additional donation of £10 million to the British Red Cross. Many of the big issues we face can only be properly tackled together. These funds will support the British Red Cross to accelerate their response, reaching more people – and quickly – to ensure those made most vulnerable by the outbreak can get the support they need.
At this unprecedented moment we all need to act now - and act together - to look after each other. That’s why we’re strengthening our partnership with the British Red Cross. Since 2016 we’ve seen first-hand the incredible work they do to help communities here in the UK and around the world. This new funding will get vital help to the people who need it most during the coronavirus pandemic.
Stay in touch
We’ll share another shareholder update in July 2020. Register with Computershare to receive an alert when these updates are available.
If you have any feedback or suggestions for our shareholder update, please email email@example.com.