Resolution flags end of restructure as profits rise

LONDON, March 18 Tue Mar 18, 2014 3:23am EDT

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LONDON, March 18 (Reuters) - British life group Resolution achieved a 59 percent increase in operating profits last year as the company heralded the completion of a restructuring and mooted a rebrand.

Resolution, set up in 2008 by insurance entrepreneur Clive Cowdery to buy, merge and sell underperforming life insurers, plans to apply its Friends Life brand to the listed group, it said in an earnings statement on Tuesday.

In a separate statement, the group said Cowdery, and John Tiner, will not be standing for re-election as non-executive directors at the company's shareholder meeting in May.

The group said its free surplus stands at 331 million pounds, up 10 percent from a year earlier while the value of new business rose 5 percent.

Resolution said it had met its key financial targets for 2013 and had achieved 160 million pounds f cost savings during a three year restructuring of the business.

The full year dividend was unchanged at 21.14 pence per share, covered 1.1 times by the sustainable free surplus and the group said it would consider paying out more to shareholders when coverage exceeds 1.3 times.

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