LGA aims to be a consistent top ten provider of ordinary life assurance in the US as measured by sums assured. In 2011, LGA recorded its best ever year for new business placing us comfortably within this target group. Our core market consists of higher net worth customers serviced through the Broker General Agent distribution channel, where we are actively building a strong reputation for delivering value-for-money products backed by expert underwriting and high quality service. This strategy is working, with sales increasing by 39% to $111m in 2011, beating the previous record.
In addition to growing the new business franchise, we continue to be a low-cost provider and during 2011 our strong control over expenses resulted in unit cost reductions, improved new business margins and higher profits.
Meanwhile, our capital restructuring plan continues to deliver synergies for the Group and competitive pricing advantages through reduced financing costs to LGA. Additionally, LGA was upgraded by Standard and Poor’s in December, from A+ to AA-, in recognition that it is a core part of the Legal & General Group.