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British insurer Prudential eyes Asian growth after doubling annual profits

LONDON -- British insurance giant Prudential declared Wednesday that Asia remains a priority, despite its failed takeover bid for the Asian arm of U.S. insurer AIG, as it revealed a doubling of annual net profits.

Prudential, which unsuccessfully bid US$35.5 billion for AIA in last year, said profits after tax rallied to 1.43 billion pounds (1.67 billion euros, US$2.31 billion) in 2010.

That compared with net earnings of 676 million pounds in 2009, the London-listed company added in a results statement.

Prudential chief executive Tidjane Thiam welcomed the group's “very strong performance” in 2010 and said expansion in Asia would remain its priority.

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