Chairman of the Executive board Willem van Duin kicked-off the afternoon with an update on our strategy. In this update he looked back on our progress so far and discussed our ambitions for the remainder of the strategic plan period ‘Delivering Together’. First he illustrated the strong improvement in results and discussed how Achmea remains a well-diversified company with a robust financial position. Then, he looked forward at 2020 and showed that we are well on track to meet our ambitions, benefiting from innovation and a shift to providing services in addition to insurances.
Willem van Duin further explained how we focus on consolidating our current position, expanding existing business models, enhancing digital customer service and growing our strategic innovation. This should result in achieving our financial ambitions for 2020, the primary ones being structurally lowering costs with €200 million, achieving a structural operational result of €450 million, excluding our Health insurance activities, €400 million of annual Free Capital Generation and maintaining our current credit ratings. To conclude, he explained how we execute our long-term strategy of contributing to a healthy, safe and future proof society.
The second presentation was given by Robert Otto, member of the Executive Board, and was centered around the themes of customer engagement and innovation. In his presentation he explained how we are at the forefront of digital customer interaction and innovation and use this to facilitate effective distribution via our three distribution channels. Furthermore, he showed that our digital capabilities and our customer engagement skills made for the perfect basis for our transition to omni-channel distribution. In the direct channel and in bancassurance distribution we are frontrunners in the market. This is the result of previous measures to improve the IT-infrastructure of our organization and the efficient multi-brand strategy we have. On top of this, the various easily scalable platforms we use for our distribution can easily be exported internationally.
The last speaker of the afternoon was Michel Lamie, Chief Financial Officer. His presentation was a deep-dive in the development of the group’s financial results, capital position and capital management. In his presentation he showed that we strongly improved our results and explained how we maintain a strong capital position. Michel Lamie also elaborated upon the management actions taken to improve the operational result and increase the free capital generation in 2017 as well as for the upcoming period until 2020. In our projections for the future we showed that the Health insurance market’s significantly lower loss provisions are a sign that the market is moving towards premium levels at cost price. Furthermore, our FCCR improved strongly and we plan to further improve it in the coming years. Our strong results also contributed to an improved solvency ratio and we strive to maintain a healthy solvency ratio in the future. Furthermore an overview of our capital management was provided, illustrating how our effective capital management has reduced volatility in our earnings and solvency position.