FBD opens new office in ‘the real capital’
FBD Insurance opened its new office in Cork City this Friday.

FBD’s new office is located on the South Mall in Cork City.

To celebrate the office opening, customers and friends of FBD Insurance were invited to an event in the office where chief executive Fiona Muldoon and Ireland and Munster rugby legend Alan Quinlan, along with Cork branch manager Morgan McGuire, cut the ribbon at the front door to mark the occasion.

New office

Some of the staff who were in the office on Curraheen Road, Bishopstown, will now be working in the new office.

FBD has 34 local sales offices, including five in the county of Cork. This makes “Cork the ‘real capital’ as far as FBD is concerned,” Muldoon said at the opening.

“Cork is a very important growth market for FBD Insurance.

"FBD is celebrating 50 years in business in Ireland and we are proud of the strength of our customer relationships in Cork city and county,” Muldoon said.

“Our Cork city branch manager Morgan McGuire and his team look forward to offering great service and value to even more of Cork’s businesses and citizens.”

Read more

Farmer Business Developments backs FBD in €20m investment

No dilution in FBD shares as insurer buys back €70m Fairfax bond

Muldoon says FBD is not for sale

Herdwatch acquires 'Tinder for bulls'
The herd management app has taken over Bullmatch, a company matching cows with the most suitable bulls through computer power.

Herdwatch has announced the acquisition of Bullmatch, a bull selection software tool created by Co Clare pedigree Limousin breeders Brian and Teresa Kelly.

The Bullmatch technology allows farmers to select one or more characteristics they look for in a calf, eg a star or EBI rating. A computer algorithm instantly suggests a list of bulls to achieve this result with the selected cows.

Farmers using Herdwatch will have access to the bull matching service at no extra cost

The company describes the service as "Tinder for bulls", claiming it can save farmers hours researching and matching each individual cow to the best bull, and ensure the best chance of achieving the full genetic potential of their breeding herd.

Herdwatch and Bullmatch teams will now work together to integrate this technology into Herdwatch's existing herd management app in the coming months.

They will also expand Bullmatch's current beef capability to dairy herds and roll it out in the UK.

Farmers using Herdwatch will then have access to the bull matching service at no extra cost, a company spokesperson told the Irish Farmers Journal.

Read more

Innovation arena at this year Ploughing

New tool for lost tags on Herdwatch app

Agri-shares: FBD shares show modest rise after €50m profit
Shares in FBD only showed modest gains this week, despite the insurer posting a €50m profit.

Shares in FBD Holdings rose a modest 2% to close to €9 after the insurer posted an overall profit of €50m for 2018.

FBD saw profits from writing insurance soar more than 40% last year to hit €63m. The strong results come despite gross written premiums falling marginally (€1m) to €371.5m last year.

Speaking to the Irish Farmers Journal, FBD CEO Fiona Muldoon said she was satisfied with volumes in its farm book following an initial shock with the entrance of AXA into the market in the summer.

She said the company has worked very hard to compete and hold on to its customers but acknowledged that the farm book had “lost marginal market share”. FBD claims to have 75% of the Irish farm insurance market.

Of the other listed agribusiness PLCs, shares in Aryzta (-3%), Greencore (-2%) and Kerry Group (-1%) all retreated slightly in the last week.

Shares in plastics group IPL Plastics, formerly known as One51, were down a little over 1% this week to C$10.65.

Shares in Donegal Investment Group gained 1% this week and are trading close to €9, while Origin Enterprise shares are up 2% in the week to €5.42.

On oil markets, the price of Brent crude oil is trading at $66.31/barrel this week.

FBD profits up 41% to €63m
The insurer says its profit hike was not due to higher farmer premiums.

FBD chief executive Fiona Muldoon has said the company’s higher profits are not coming from charging higher premiums to farmers. The company’s insurance profits jumped by 41% last year to €63m.

Speaking to the Irish Farmers Journal, Muldoon said FBD Insurance had lost business in its farm book due to increased competition in the marketplace.

AXA entered the farm insurance market last year for the first time to challenge Ireland’s largest farm insurer.

FBD claims to have 75% of the Irish farm insurance market.

Muldoon said that its higher profits in 2018 were a result of better risk selection rather than charging higher premiums to farmers.