Insurance Newsletter – March 10 to 14, 2014

The premium income of general insurance industry in India rose 19% to Rs. 73.81 billion in January, according to IRDA (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) data

March 14, 2014 6:41 IST | India Infoline News Service
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General insurers' premium income rises 19% to Rs. 73.81bn in Jan
The premium income of general insurance industry in India rose 19% to Rs. 73.81 billion in January, according to IRDA (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) data.

The four public sector insurers - National Insurance, New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance and United India Insurance - reported their gross premium collection rise by 24.59% year-on-year to Rs. 41.06 billion in January, the data added.

The gross premium collection by 23 private players in January were up by 12.62% to Rs. 32.74 billion.

Private player Apollo Munich saw its premium rise by 52.98% to Rs. 1.67 billion in January.

Reliance General recorded a rise of 14.1% to Rs. 1.85 billion, while HDFC Ergo General's premium in January increased by 9.5% to Rs. 2.31 billion.

Malaysian missing flight: GIC expects about Rs. 75 cr claim

India's reinsurer General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC) on Thursday said that it is expected to see a claim of around Rs. 75 crore from the missing aircraft of Malaysian Airlines, according to a media report.

However, GIC said that this is as per the initial estimate and most of the claim amount is reinsured. Hence the impart will be less, the report added.

As per reports, the Malaysian plane might have been insured for around $400 million out of which GIC has 3% share of total claim. 

The GIC estimates have been done presuming that there would be total claim arising out from the aircraft... Read more

Group health insurance premium rates to remain at lower-end

The premium rates for group health insurance are likely to fall by 5% to 10% at the time of policy renewals in April.

According to insurers, although the number of claims have increased in the group health insurance segment, high competition among companies have led the insurers to keep premium rates at the lower end.

Group health insurance is the health cover that employers buy for their employees. It is a loss-making portfolio for general insurance companies with a total claims ratio of around 110%. For example: For every Rs. 100 they get as premium, they are paying out claims worth Rs. 110... Read more

Domestic News

Max Life ties up with Toyota Financial Services

Max Life Insurance, one of the leading life insurance companies in India has joined hands with Toyota Financial Services India Ltd. (TFSIN), a non-banking financial set-up which provides auto finance solely to Toyota customers in India. This alliance has been formed to provide insurance cover for car loan customers of Toyota Financial Services under a Max Life group product called “Max Life Group Credit Life Secure”.

As per this agreement, Max Life Insurance will issue a Group Credit Life Secure policy, where Toyota Financial Services India will be the master (group) policyholder and hence their customers can enroll themselves as members within the policy to cover their financial liability pertaining to their car loans... Read more

Reliance Life launches Smart Cash Plus Plan

Reliance Life Insurance Company, part of Reliance Capital Ltd, announced the launch of a new traditional product, ‘Reliance Smart Cash Plus Plan’.

The plan offers triple benefits of enhanced protection, periodic liquidity and long-term savings.

Reliance Smart Cash Plus Plan is a regular premium non-linked scheme that offers aperfect mix of long-term protection and savings along with the benefit of guaranteed lump sum payment every three years (starting from the end of fourth policy year).

The key highlight of the new plan is that it guarantees money back payouts – that increases by 5 per cent with every payout - during the policy tenure and pays 100 per cent sum assured as a survival benefit on maturity... Read more

HDFC Life, BSL express interest in buying Aviva Life

HDFC Life and Birla Sun Life are among the six insurance companies which have expressed interest in buying Aviva Plc's Indian business Aviva Life, according to a media report.

Aviva Life is the joint venture between Dabur and Aviva Plc. Aviva is UK's one of the largest insurer and one of Europe's leading providers of life and general insurance. 

The Burmans of the Dabur family will also sell their holding as Aviva Plc is losing interest in the business in India, the report added... Read more

Bharti AXA General aims to open 29 more branches in 2014

Bharti AXA General Insurance (GI) announced its intent to grow and consolidate its position in 2014, at the company’s Annual Group Press Conclave on Wednesday. As part of its growth plan, the company will focus on becoming more customer and partner centric by introducing new products, deeper penetration in existing markets, reaching out to new markets and segments as well as differentiated services and digital offerings.

The company aims to open 29 branches across the width and length of the country in 2014, after applying for the necessary Regulatory approvals, with the objective of deepening its reach and distribution in tier II and tier III markets... Read more

ICCL takes Counterparty Default Insurance for Rs. 375 crore

BSE's Clearing Corporation, ICCL has taken a defaults insurance cover of Rs. 375 Crore from United India Assurance. It is a very unique deal in this sector. After the 2008 financial crisis, default risks were not covered by Insurers or were covered for very small amounts. Rs. 375 Crore is more than twice the expected 1 day loss for ICCL in all open positions put together as per the various stress scenarios tested by ICCL. ICCL has slowly moved to secure itself further by creating such defences. Recently, ICCL was granted "IND AAA" rating by India Ratings ltd and Care Ratings Ltd... Read more

Future Generali Insurance Q3 profit of Rs. 28.4 cr

Future Generali India Insurance, a joint venture between Future Group - the leading retailer of India and Generali – the global leading insurer, has posted a profit of Rs. 28.4 crore for 9 months ended December 31, 2013.

The gross written premium for the period stood at Rs. 944 crore as against Rs. 855 crore for the same period last year. The company has reported positive business growth both Q-o-Q and Y-o-Y. The total premium collection for the quarter stood at Rs. 319 crore as against Rs. 307 crore last quarter. The company’s total premium collection for the same quarter in FY12 - 13 was at Rs. 281 crore... Read more

Tata AIA Life launches Mahalife Gold Plus

Tata AIA Life Insurance Company Limited (Tata AIA Life) has launched Tata AIA Life Insurance MahaLife Gold Plus, a whole of life plan that protects against the uncertainties of changing time by offering insurance protection and lifetime income.
Tata AIA Life Insurance Mahalife Gold Plus is a non-linked participating plan that secures the future of the insured and his loved ones, with just one policy. The plan that comes with a minimum basic sum assured of INR 2 lakhs, offers increased guaranteed benefits with higher sum assured and returns till the age 85 years... Read more

New Appointments

IDBI Federal Life elevates Vighnesh Shahane as CEO

IDBI Federal Life Insurance, a joint-venture of IDBI Bank, India’s premier development and commercial bank, Federal Bank, one of India’s leading private sector banks and Ageas, a multinational insurance giant based out of Europe, announced the appointment of Vighnesh Shahane as the Chief Executive Officer & Whole Time Director of the Company.

Speaking on the occasion, R. K. Bansal, Executive Director, IDBI Bank, who in the interim had taken additional charge as the Acting CEO, IDBI Federal, said, “At IDBI Federal, we believe in recognising talent and creating leaders from within the organisation. In his capacity as a channel head, Vighnesh has brought about a positive change and under his leadership, the Bancassurance channel registered unprecedented growth.”... Read more

International News

Zurich Insurance to cut costs and up to 800 jobs worldwide

Zurich Insurance Group announced plans to streamline its organizational structure to reduce both complexity and costs as it continues to deliver on the Group’s strategic priorities for 2014-2016.

As set out at Investor Day in late 2013, the Group continues to invest in priority markets and in parallel is reducing the cost of its global structure. This initiative, which follows a comprehensive review, will remove management layers between Group and the business units. It is designed to position the company for profitable growth, placing customers and their needs at the center of our business, and to drive one of the key strategic priorities set out in late 2013, which is growing operating earnings, the global insurer said in a press release... Read more

China ranks second in agri-insurance market after US

China Insurance Regulatory Commission said that the country has emerged as the world’s second largest agricultural insurance market after the US with a compensation payment of $3.4 billion.
China’s agricultural insurance covered 73 million hectares of crops in 2013, which is 45% of the total planting acreage.

The agricultural insurance scheme paid $3.4 billion in compensation and benefited 33.67 million rural households last year.


Insurance policies you must have

Woody Allen put our hesitance towards buying insurance beautifully when he quoted, “There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman?”

As an Indian, we typically prepare for any contingency by praying for protection. While we need the gods to be kind, we also need a more realistic form of protection. That’s where insurance steps in. Insurance protects us and our loved ones by providing financial support when an unforeseen event hits us... Read more

Insurance: How to make application under RTI Act

The Government has enacted the Right to Information Act, 2005. The RTI Act is meant to give to the citizens of India access to information under control of public authorities to promote transparency and accountability in these organisations. The IRDA is a public authority as defined in the RTI Act. As such, the IRDA is obliged to provide information to members of public in accordance with the provisions of the said Act... Read more

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