PPS, the financial services company that serves graduate professionals, has declared that its total profit-share allocation to PPS members for the 2016 financial year was over R2.7 billion.

Over the last 10 years, the total cumulative profit-share allocation to members – in other words, the profits the organisation has paid to its members – has been R22.5bn.

PPS is not listed on the stock exchange and has no external shareholders – instead, it operates under the ethos of mutuality, and all PPS’s profits go to its members (who have qualifying products) by way of annual allocations to their PPS Profit-Share Accounts.These profits build up over their working lives and, from the age of 60 onwards, they can have these accumulated funds transferred into PPS unit trusts for further growth.

Izak Smit, the chief executive of PPS, says that, in addition to the PPS Profit-Share Account allocation of R2.7bn, a further R2.4bn was paid to members in benefits (mostly life assurance claims) last year.

An increased interest in the mutuality model is taking place globally, with the total market share of mutual and co-operatives insurers increasing from 24.1 percent in 2007 to 26.7 percent in 2015, according to the latest statistics from the International Co-operative and Mutual Insurance Federation (ICMIF).

Shaun Tarbuck, the chief executive of the ICMIF, says that mutual and co-operative insurers performed robustly in the past few years as they continued to expand their global reach, shown by a growth in the aggregate number of policyholders served and people employed around the world.

“Mutuals and co-operatives continue to show their relevance at a regional level, with a growing influence in the African market.”

Smit says: “We are extremely pleased with the performance of PPS during 2016, especially in light of the challenging economic conditions.

"These results demonstrate the benefits of belonging to a financial services group that operates under the ethos of mutuality.

"As the PPS business continues to grow, our members benefit continually by having financial peace of mind and by being allocated all the profits of the company.”