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Lloyd's picks Brussels for EU base, posts virtually flat FY'16 profit

Lloyd's of London plans to establish a new European insurance subsidiary in Brussels even as it reported a full-year 2016 pro forma result before tax of £2.11 billion, virtually unchanged from £2.12 billion in 2015.

The envisaged unit will allow Lloyd's to write risks from EU countries after the U.K. leaves the bloc.

"The decision of the U.K. to leave the European Union has obvious implications for the market and our business with Europe. Finding the right solution has been a top priority over the last nine months," outgoing Chairman John Nelson said.

Meanwhile, CEO Inga Beale said Brussels met the critical elements of providing a robust regulatory framework in a central European location.

Lloyd's saw gross written premiums of £29.86 billion in 2016, up from £26.69 billion a year earlier. Premiums written, net of reinsurance, increased year over year to £23.07 billion from £21.02 billion. Earned premiums, net of reinsurance, increased to £22.66 billion from £20.57 billion.

Claims incurred, net of reinsurance, stood at £12.99 billion in 2016, up from the year-ago £10.26 billion.

The total investment return rose to £1.35 billion in 2016 from £402 million in 2015.

Return on capital stood at 8.1% in 2016, compared to 9.1% a year ago, while the combined ratio stood at 97.9% in 2016, compared to 90.0% in 2015.