KARACHI: EFU Life Assurance Managing Director and Chief Executive Taher G. Sachak stated that the life insurance sector has been in a high-growth mode for the last few years.
“In 2015, the life insurance total gross premium crossed the Rs150 billion mark, with an average 5 year annualised growth of approximately 25%. The growth trends in 2016 have been consistent with the past year,” said Sachak.
According to Sachak, one of the key drivers for this growth momentum has been bancassurance-the distribution of life insurance products through banks.
“The primary focus of all the players operating in the market is to increase the penetration in the existing markets. Therefore, a lot of emphasis is not only on the strengthening of the traditional distribution networks but also the development of alternate channels.”
Life insurance business predominantly comes from the individual policyholders, explained Sachak.
“I believe that apart from the arrival of Takaful, growing middle class, soaring bancassurance and introduction of small ticket insurance schemes will all aid growth of life insurers in coming years.”
EFU Life Insurance
Talking about EFU Life Insurance in particular, Sachak said that 2016 was a good year, not only in terms of the exceptional growth across all segments but also because of the ground breaking innovations in new products.
“We commenced our operations in 1992, with a paid up capital of Rs30 million, and today that paid up capital has increased to Rs1 billion, which is the highest in the life insurance industry. We are one of the leading asset managers in the country with total funds under management of over Rs94 billion.”
Additionally, our credit rating was upgraded to AA+ with outlook stable by JCR VIS, which is a testament to company’s strong capitalisation level vis-à-vis the nature of risks underwritten and a very high capacity to meet policyholders’ obligation, said Sachak.
Talking about the future, the EFU chief executive said our vision as the leading life insurance provider is to take life insurance to every household in Pakistan.
“The main task that lies ahead for us for future growth is to further expand our distribution network for marketing our products, and continue to grow our portfolio and our offerings by introducing providing innovative and efficient financial planning solutions that cater to all pockets and segments of our society.
“In the last few years, we have expanded aggressively by opening up numerous branches and strengthening our sales force nationwide.”
He added that strategic partnerships will continue to play a pivotal role in our business by helping us to reach more people, by penetrating into cities where we do not have our physical presence.
“Bancassurance channel have been a key driver for business growth in the past, through our alliances with our 14 bank partners for conventional life insurance products, and 10 bank partners for BancaTakaful solutions.”
Additionally, Sachak added, that strategic partnerships with the telecos has been at a forefront, with us providing affordable financial solutions of insurance protection and savings to cater the masses.
Furthermore, Sachak was optimistic that the company’s new corporate campaign ‘Kamal ki jeet’ will help attract people towards life insurance.
“Kamal Ki Jeet is a story of a man focused on winning in life, by preparing tirelessly for and subsequently winning a big race. It highlights his resolve through time in giving his family the very best, by opting for life insurance at the time when he has his first child.
This story is applicable to everyone, we dream big, want to achieve the highest accolades, but do we really have a plan? Victory is inevitable, if we put our mind to it, and pursue it with conviction and perseverance.”
The EFU head believes the country’s youth has the power to move the economy into the next phase of independence. “Given the importance of youth to Pakistan’s future development, it is necessary to provide the means and environment in which this invaluable human resource attains the optimal growth potential and motivation to participate in the main stream of life.”