CPP hit by India’s devastating Covid second wave

The surge of the Delta variant of Covid-19 in India, which battered the country earlier this year, put a dent in the finances of insurance and financial services group CPP.

The business said it swung to a £700,000 loss in the first six months of 2021, compared with a £500,000 profit a year earlier.

Revenue, however, rose 10% to £66.4 million, the company said on Tuesday.

India is CPP’s biggest market, and was hit especially hard by the Delta variant in the spring.

At one point in May, more than 4,000 people were dying from the virus every day.

Chief executive Jason Walsh said: “The first half of 2021 was a similar story to that of 2020, with a strong first quarter tempered by the negative effects of Covid-19 in the second, particularly in our main market of India.

“Elsewhere in our key markets we continue to make progress.

“Our performance in Turkey at a local level was particularly pleasing, driven in large part by our expanded network of partners in the territory.

“However, the continuing devaluation of the lira has largely negated this performance at a group level.

“In the UK and EU we continued to build on strong foundations to develop an innovative, differentiated and integrated business with compelling prospects.”

Despite some of these headwinds, the company is still trading broadly in line with expectations, Mr Walsh said.

He added that, while there might yet be another wave of Covid in India, the company nevertheless thinks it can grow there in the second half of the year and further ahead.

“The structural drivers around the growth of the middle class that have made the territory such a success story to date show no sign of abating, giving us confidence in our ability to deliver further growth in the years ahead,” he said.