FBD Holdings returned to profit for the first half of 2021, posting a €22m profit on gross written premiums (GWP) of €181.4m before tax compared with a loss of €9m on €176.2m of GWP for the same period in 2020.

However, when €5m of pandemic related rebates are included, GWP is down 1%. The number of policy holders was up by 3,500, an increase of 1.4%.

These results include a provision of €13m for consequential payments following the ruling by the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman and FBD has increased the estimate for its share of public house claims for business interruption to €67m.

The estimated total cost of payments to publicans revised is upwards by €33m to €183m and is explained by FBD as due to higher than expected legal costs and review of amounts that will be paid out to claimants based on latest information.

FBD will have to pay €67m of this cost with the balance of the €183m total cost picked up by FBD’s reinsurers.


FBD’s investment portfolio delivered €5m of the profits but chief executive Tomás Ó’Midheach told the Irish Farmers Journal that the absence of winter storms and weather-related damage was a major contributor to the solid first half of the year.

“We always expect weather events and when they don’t materialise, this contributes to profits.”

While average motor insurance premiums have fallen by 5.7%, business insurance reduced by 8% and there was an 11% fall in commercial vehicle premiums.

However, tractor insurance increased by 3.8% because of larger tractors with higher repair costs being insured, according to FBD, while overall farm premiums fell by an average of 1.2%.

FBD had reduced claims of €9.5m for the first half of 2021 at €107.5m compared with €117m for the same period in 2020.

The big feature here was that business interruption claims amounted to €30m in the first half of 2020 compared to just €2.1m for this year.

On the issue of farm claims, Ó’Midheach said that “farms are the most dangerous workplaces and injuries are typically more severe than FBD’s experience of other workplaces.

“Accidents involving livestock, machinery and farm construction can be catastrophic and make up some of FBD’s largest injury claims”.