Company showcase: Prudential

At over 150 years old, the insurer continues to evolve with the lifestyles of its customers.

by MT Staff
Last Updated: 05 Dec 2017

Website: prudential.co.uk

Head office: Prudential plc, Laurence Pountney Hill, London EC4R 0HH

Number of employees: 23,500

PURPOSE AND STRATEGY

Prudential helps to remove uncertainty from life’s big events. Whether it’s starting a family, saving for a child’s education or planning for old age, we provide our customers with financial peace of mind, enabling them to face the future with greater confidence. With £635bn of assets under management, we actively invest our customers’ money in the real economy and at the same time we deliver sustainable and growing returns for our investors.

During the past 10 years, profits have increased from £1.1bn to £4.3bn and our dividend has more than doubled, delivering shareholders a total of £6.8bn. Our strategy is aligned to structural trends: the savings and protection needs of the growing middle class in Asia; the retirement income needs of the US’s 80 million baby boomers, and the growing demand for managed savings solutions among the ageing population of Europe. Since 2013, we have also been developing in Africa, serving an under-protected population who have limited access to financial services.

MEETING CUSTOMER NEEDS

In Asia, the growing middle class are both under-saved and unprotected. The gap between the insurance cover that people have and what they need to maintain the living standards of their families has been estimated at £35trn. We help to bridge that gap with a broad range of solutions across 14 markets. In the US, 10,000 people will be retiring every day for the next 20 years.

Our solutions are designed to help this group avoid running out of money and provide them with a cushion against volatile markets. In Europe, there is a growing demand for managed solutions – savings products that provide better long-term returns than cash, while smoothing out the ups and downs of the market. We meet that need through our unique PruFund propositions and M&G’s range of actively managed funds.

INVESTING IN THE REAL ECONOMY

We invest our customers’ money actively in the real economies of the markets we serve, helping to support sustainable growth. In Asia, for example, we are partnering with the World Bank to channel $500m into muchneeded infrastructure in emerging markets. In the US, we are helping states such as California and Texas meet their ambitious green energy targets and reduce the risk of future power shortfalls, with investments in wind and solar generation. In the UK, we have £60bn invested in a wide range of investments including loans to help businesses develop renewable energy capacity, hospitals, rural broadband and affordable homes.

COMMUNITY INVESTMENT

Responsibility sits at the heart of our business and this is reflected in our community investment programmes around the world. Cha-Ching, the world’s first and only global financial education platform, began in our Asia markets and is now operating on four continents. Asia is also the region of the world most prone to natural disasters, and we provide a pan-regional disaster readiness and relief programme that includes survival education, building disaster-resilient homes and delivering emergency funding.

Worldwide, last year we supported more than 8,000 of our staff across the Prudential group to give up their time to volunteer for causes important to them. And here in the UK, during the five years of our sponsorship of Prudential RideLondon, the world’s biggest festival of cycling and one of Britain’s greatest mass-participation charity events, around £50 million has been raised for good causes.

OUR PEOPLE

We foster an inclusive working environment where we develop our talent, reward great performance and recognise our differences to continue delivering outstanding results for our customers, shareholders and communities. We believe that diversity of experience, thought and background is vital to our success both today and in the future, and we have made diversity and inclusion one of our strategic objectives.

We also have an array of initiatives to drive employee engagement, and our reward packages are designed to attract, motivate and retain high-calibre people across all levels. Our 23,500 staff are supplemented by 600,000 financial consultants in our Asian markets. The ‘Man from the Pru’, once a familiar sight visiting British homes door-to-door, is now more likely to be a woman travelling around her community in one of our Asian markets, bringing our services to a new generation of customers.

INNOVATION

Prudential was founded in 1848, and you don’t grow as old as we are without innovating. We have a flexible, collaborative approach to incorporating the best digital technologies into our operations, while also leveraging our global scale to share new insights across our businesses at pace. From the ground-breaking PruFund ISA in the UK to microinsurance in Africa delivered by mobile phone, we are constantly adapting our products and finding new ways to serve our customers that mirror their evolving lifestyles.

Image credit: Diliff/Wikimedia Commons

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