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May 09, 2012 5:45 am ET
Cheick Tidjane Thiam - Group Chief Executive and Executive Director
Nicolaos Andreas Nicandrou - Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director
Blair Stewart - BofA Merrill Lynch, Research Division
Jon Hocking - Morgan Stanley, Research Division
Raghu Hariharan - Citigroup Inc, Research Division
Andrew Hughes - Exane BNP Paribas, Research Division
Andrew Crean - Autonomous Research LLP
Toby Langley - Barclays Capital, Research Division
Greig N. Paterson - Keefe, Bruyette, & Woods, Inc., Research Division
James Pearce - UBS Investment Bank, Research Division
Nick Holmes - Nomura Securities Co. Ltd., Research Division
Oliver Steel - Deutsche Bank AG, Research Division
Ashik Musaddi - JP Morgan Chase & Co, Research Division
Good day, and welcome to the Prudential plc Quarter 1 IMS Analyst and Investor Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] Just to remind you, this call is being recorded.
I'm pleased to present Group Chief Executive, Tidjane Thiam. Please begin your meeting.
Cheick Tidjane Thiam
Thank you, Hugh, and good morning, everybody, and welcome to Prudential's Q1 IMS teleconference. I am joined this morning, as usual, by Nic Nicandrou, our Group Chief Financial Officer.
Today, we are reporting a strong start to 2012 with good performances from all of our businesses and a robust balance sheet with an IGD surplus of GBP 3.8 billion at the end of March. In the first 3 months of the year, group sales were up 9% on an APE basis and new business profits were up 8%. Asia continues to be the driver of our growth as APE sales increased by 21% and new business profits by 22%. We remain on track to achieve our objective to double Asia's 2009 IFRS and new business profits by 2013, i.e. to double our profits in Asia in 4 years.