To deepen the African insurance industry, companies and the players must embrace innovation, creativity in the way insurance services are delivered to the consumers.
This is the only way we can win more consumers, sustain confidence and increase penetration, irrespective of social and environmental challenges.
Corneille Karekezi, group managing director/CEO, African Reinsurance Corporation (Africa Re) made the remark at the Company’s award ceremony to recognize outstanding firms and individuals contributing significantly to insurance growth in Africa.
Karekezi said the award, an initiative of Africa Re will help build capacity and bring competitiveness among companies in the industry.
The award held at the recently concluded African insurance Organisation Conference in Accra, Ghana saw Nigeria’s FBNInsurance emerging ‘Insurance Company of the Year’; Richard Lowe of Activa, Cameroon emerging CEO of the YEAR; Jubilee Insurance of Kenya winning innovation company of the year; and
Richard Lowe has demonstrated to the entire African insurance industry that he is truly a man of Vision. He created “Globus Network”, the first Panafrican multilingual network present in 48 countries and also Globus Re, a reinsurance captive of the Globus network. 20 years ago, he started from the scratch “ Activa Assurance” which is today present in over seven countries. It is one of the major insurance company Africa can boast of. With over 30 years’ experience in the industry ,Richard Lowe held the position of Controller General from 1981 to 1989 at AGF (current ALLIANZ)He rose to the position of Deputy Managing Director from 1989 to 1998 in the same AGF (current ALLIANZ). He founded ACTIVA Cameroon in 1998 and remains its CEO till date.
FBN Insurance Nigeria
Between 2014 and 2017, FBN Nigeria achieved an average growth of 57.36 percent of premium income, 58.6 percent of net profit and 43 percent of shareholders ‘fund. For a relatively new company as FBN, the panel of judges considered those figures as exceptional performance especially in a country where insurance level is less than 1 percent.
The company’s aggressive strategy to develop the retail life market led to the opening of 2000 distribution agents; the pioneering role in the use of mobile phone to bring insurance products to the lowest class of citizens in Nigeria has led FBN Insurance Nigeria to achieve 70 percent of its revenue from retail life market.
Despite being approximately four years old in the insurance industry as at 2014, FBN Insurance Nigeria had become a top five life insurer (having risen from the 27th position as at 2010). In line with this rapid growth strategy, FBN Insurance proceeded to acquire 100% stake in Oasis Insurance Plc, a general insurance company in 2014. Through this acquisition, FBN Insurance diversified its business from only life insurance to life and general insurance.
From a loss position after the acquisition, FBN Insurance Nigeria succeeded in becoming a very profitable company in the first year of operation. This profit position has been sustained annually up till now. In recognition of this strategic acquisition, the company received an award for Africa Deal of the year by M&A Atlas Awards in 2015.
Jubilee Insurance, Kenya
The innovation that earns Jubilee Insurance of Kenya this price is called “Julie”.
“Julie” is an artificial intelligence. It is a Digital Virtual Assistant (DVA) that responds to almost all the customers’ inquiries and even offer products that customers can buy with minimal human intervention.
It is created to improve interactions with digital clients as well as to disrupt service delivery value chain.
“Julie” has the capabilities of learning new information and using this information to make future decisions. Clients are accorded the opportunity to ask questions 24-7 and receive valuable instant feedback regarding their questions. This is a first in the Insurance industry in East & Central Africa.