- This amount is equivalent to COP 603.4 for every ordinary and preferred share outstanding and shall be paid in four equal installments in April, July and October 2021, and January 2022.
- This dividend shall be received by a total of 14,349 shareholders, which include the pension funds in which 17.1 million Colombians hold their retirement savings.
- The Shareholders also approved allocating COP 6,276 million to the SURA Foundation, which added to the Organization’s programmed social investments for 2021, brings the total to COP 19,348 million.
- Shareholders were informed of Grupo SURA’s strategic definitions, in its role as an investment manager in pursuit of sustainable profitability through a well-balanced portfolio.
- Our subsidiaries, Suramericana and SURA Asset Management, have invested USD 92 million (approximately COP 327,000 million) this year in developing their own lines of business.
Grupo SURA's Annual Shareholders’ Meeting ended today at noon. This year, our shareholders were able to watch this event as it was streamed live, having previously delegated their participation to their respective proxy-holders, as well as other of the Company’s stakeholder groups. Here, the Management of the company was able to given an account of the different measures taken by Grupo SURA and its subsidiaries, SURA Asset Management and Suramericana, this past year, particularly in tackling the impacts of the pandemic and in order to continue providing our support to more than 37.9 million people and companies that rely on SURA in all 10 countries where we are present in Latin America.
The Shareholders also approved the Board of Directors' proposal to increase this year’s ordinary dividend by 3.5% compared to 2020, this totaling COP 603.4 per share, on 469,037,260 ordinary and 112,940,288 preferred shares. This dividend shall be paid in four equal installments of COP 150.85 per share on the following dates: April 19, July 1 and October 1, 2021, as well as the final payment on January 3, 2022.
Consequently, Grupo SURA shall be distributing COP 351,165 million (approximately USD 99 million) in dividends among its 14,349 registered shareholders at the end of 2020, of which more than 12 thousand are private individuals with 2,800 of these only becoming shareholders in this past year.
"We would like to extend our gratitude to each and every shareholder who has believed in Grupo SURA. Our commitment is to continue moving ahead while creating added value for both our shareholder community and for society as a whole. In the case of our shareholders, we are pleased to be able to provide them with an ordinary dividend this year that has increased nearly twice the rate of inflation in Colombia, thanks to the fact that, in spite of this being a challenging year for all of us, we have a well-balanced portfolio that has remained resilient to the impacts of the pandemic. This is also a way of increasing the savings of more than 17 million Colombians who own about 29% of Grupo SURA’s share capital through their respective pension funds," stated Gonzalo Pérez, Chief Executive Officer of Grupo SURA.
The Shareholders also agreed to create a reserve for social outreach initiatives, this worth COP 6,276 million (approximately USD 1.8 million), which shall be channeled through the SURA Foundation in Colombia this in order to drive our main work fronts, namely quality of education, cultural activities, strengthening institutional frameworks, citizenship building as well as the corporate volunteer program, where the Foundation expects to invest a total of COP 19,348 million (approximately USD 5.4 million) this year.
Developing our strategy as an investment manager
At this year’s Annual Meeting, the Company’s shareholders were informed of the main aspects of having updated our strategic definitions, which we completed at the beginning of 2021 and which are setting the course for Grupo SURA as an investment manager, as it continues to create wellbeing and a harmonious level of development for people, organizations and society at large, with the strategic objective of obtaining sustainable profitability. This includes delivering to its shareholders an economic return that is higher than the cost of capital, this based on a well-balanced portfolio of investments whose prime focus is on its financial services companies, with different business lines as well as their relationships with the wider environment that are driving the harmonious development of all those countries where they operate.
In this sense, looking ahead to 2021, the priority of both SURA Asset Management and Suramericana is to help the region’s economic recovery by being present in businesses that are decisive for the competitiveness of companies and people’s well-being. This means investing in projects that strengthen the transformation of their operating models, developing their channels and enhancing their access so as to be able to remain closer to their clients, as well as further developing their portfolios of products, solutions and services, this based on the different needs and requirements of the countries where they operate. These investments total USD 92 million (almost COP 327,000 million), divided up as follows: Suramericana, USD 54 million (approximately COP 192,000 million), and SURA Asset Management another USD 38 million (approximately COP 135,000 million).
"As an investment manager, Grupo SURA's priority this year is to look for new ways of contributing our own applied knowledge to the efforts of our subsidiaries so that they may continue to drive economic recovery throughout the region, with their products and solutions which are so relevant to our Latin American people," concluded Gonzalo Pérez.
Performance milestones for the SURA Business Group during this past year:
- Suramericana allocated COP 1.4 trillion (USD 379 million) to the efforts conducted on different work fronts in order to deal with the pandemic and provide support to its policy-holders and fund members.
- SURA Asset Management created financing lines for 1,282 SMEs and our SURA Enterprises (Empresas SURA) program provided their advisory services and knowledge to more than 100,000 entrepreneurs through the region.
- Seguros SURA Colombia pioneered the oxygen therapy model in Colombia and out of the entire COVID patients attended, the case fatality rate at the end of 2020 came to just one third of the world average and four times lower than the nation-wide rate.
- The Companies that make up the SURA Business Group not only managed to preserve existing jobs since the pandemic first began, but also increased its headcount for a total of 31,580 employees, which is 4.3% more than for 2019.
- Social investment, channeled through our Companies as well as the SURA Foundation in 10 countries throughout the region, totaled COP 106,899 million (USD 28.9 million), 13% more than in 2019.
- Special payment plans were granted to local MSMEs that form part of the Companies’ 50,280 suppliers on a regional basis.
- For its part, our Occupational Health and Safety subsidiary, ARL SURA provided 1.4 million advisory services in promoting occupational hygiene and safety and preventing risks so that its member employers and their workers could safely help to open up the economy.
- Grupo SURA was included for the tenth consecutive year in the Dow Jones Sustainability Global Index (DJSI) being the only Latin American organization from the Diverse Financial Services and Capital Markets sector.