A company that employs hundreds of people in York is to give every member of staff £1,000 in shares.
Insurance giant Aviva unveiled mammoth returns for investors – and a £1,000 shares windfall for its 22,000 staff despite posting a drop in annual earnings.
It employs about 2,000 people in York.
The group said it will make the shares payout in May as a “thank you” to employees, with all staff across its operations in the UK, Ireland and Canada receiving the same amount.
It will also hand back another £3.75 billion to shareholders, on top of a £1 billion existing share buyback programme, meaning it will return £4.75 billion to investors.
Amanda Blanc, group CEO, said:
Today we are announcing a total capital return to shareholders of £4.75bn, including the existing £1bn share buyback, delivering on our promise to shareholders by returning more than £4bn.
Our people are central to our success, and it’s only right that they share in the value they’ve helped create. So we are giving each of our 22,000 employees £1,000 in Aviva shares, to say thank you.
The group saw underlying operating profits fall 28% to £2.3 billion as it sold off a raft of businesses.
It said that, with these stripped out, earnings from continuing operations were 10% lower at £1.6 billion, as a strong performance in its general insurance arm was offset by lower operating profit in the UK and Ireland life business.
In further cheer for shareholders, Aviva said it will pay out a 14.7p a share final dividend for 2021 and disclosed aims to pay dividends of about £870 million in 2022 and £915 million in 2023.