Ride the wave

Finweek English Edition - - INVESTMENT - TANDISIZWE MAHLUTSHANA

WE PUNTED this share at the be­gin­ning of the year. It ran spec­tac­u­larly, peak­ing at about R26/share by the end of May, un­til pulling back and drop­ping to the R19/share level.

In­sur­ance stocks typ­i­cally serve as a proxy for the stock mar­ket so one would ar­gue that this share tracked the JSE Alsi’s down­ward trend as a con­se­quence of the in­fa­mous Ber­nanke speech about QE ta­per­ing in May.

The share has gained some 14.8% since the be­gin­ning of Septem­ber and its full-year re­sults last week, which showed earn­ings up 10% with new busi­ness at 19%, were well wel- comed by the mar­ket. It also in­creased its div­i­dend by 12% to 127c/share.

MMI con­tin­ues to be quite ac­tive on the con­ti­nent. It re­cently an­nounced a strate­gic part­ner­ship with Bharti Air­tel to sell in­sur­ance ser­vices through Bharti’s telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions net­works in Ghana, Kenya, Nige­ria, Tan­za­nia and Zam­bia. While th­ese are on­ly­five of the 12 African coun­tries MMI cur­rently op­er­ates in, find­ing new, strate­gic and in­no­va­tive ways to en­hance dis­tri­bu­tion is def­i­nitely a plus in the fi­nan­cial ser­vices.

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