We closed 2016 with excellent results. This is true for business trends as well as our technical insurance performance, capital strength and, in particular, our new strategic policy which has launched a business turnaround intended to rapidly change the Group. Generali closed the year with a record operating result of € 4.8 billion and profit in excess of € 2 billion, a RoE of 13.5% and an Economic Solvency Ratio of 194%. These results are even more significant as they were achieved within a complex environment marked by high market volatility and low interest rates, elements which always have significant repercussions in our sector, as well as extraordinary geopolitical events, which in some cases were quite difficult to predict. In addition, there has been an abrupt shift in the technological paradigm linked to the use of big data, and the increasingly stringent nature of regulations.
The Group is ready to face this challenging scenario through its targeted strategy. The new plan presented to the market outlines the direction of our development: Generali aims for technical and operational excellence in all areas and in all markets in which it is present. We will measure our success based not on size, but on the profits we generate. We will further improve our operating performance and we will create long-term value. We will increase our efficiency by boosting productivity and we will optimize our geographical presence by reinvesting in markets with the highest potential. We will strengthen our competitive advantage in life and property&casualty, based on technical performance as well as profitability. And as regards the needs of our clients and our distribution networks, we will leverage our capacity for innovation and the strength of our brand, the winged Lion.
We will do all of this having confi rmed our highly ambitious 2018 fi nancial targets: cash generation of more than € 7 billion, dividends exceeding € 5 billion and an average Operating RoE in excess of 13%. We will do this by increasing our speed of execution and making intensive use of technology and innovation, essential conditions to win the race to the top in the insurance sector, which is confi rmed as one of the most important and vital for the growth and well-being of modern societies.
Our strengthening confi rms not only industrial leadership: Generali aims to act as a global point of reference for corporate social responsibility as well, by best interpreting that role of corporate citizen inherent in its insurance mission: to protect, prevent, manage risk and always take a long-term view. These are the tactics that will guide our initiatives all over the world, with a view to sustainability and the creation of shared value.
Once again this year, as always, we share our pride in our results with tens of thousands of Group employees, distributors and associates, to whom we express our heartfelt thanks. They constitute our strength, and are the real reason to be optimistic about the future of Generali.
Gabriele Galateri di Genola Philippe Donnet