Edelweiss Tokio Life eyes 15-20% growth in new business premium for next few years, says CEO
Edelweiss Tokio Life Insurance Company Ltd (ETLI) has embarked on a product rebalancing journey to have a more ‘wholesome’ product portfolio and offer the right kind of products to customers, according to a top official.
The private life insurer, which started operations in 2011, is eyeing 15 to 20 per cent annual growth in new business premium (NBP) for the next few years, Sumit Rai, Managing Director and CEO, ETLI, told BusinessLine.
In the first half this fiscal, the company clocked an NBP of Rs 133 crore, a 13 per cent year-on-year growth. This was better than the overall industry growth of 9 per cent and private life insurance industry growth of about 11 per cent. For the whole of 2018-19, the NBP was Rs 344 crore. Over the last year, the proportion of ULIPs in overall product portfolio has come down from 40 to 45 per cent level to about 31 per cent.
“We are looking to have a wholesome and balanced product portfolio. We want to be a balanced player. The share of ULIPs could be 30 per cent, participating products 30 per cent, non-participating products 30 per cent and protection of about 10 per cent,” he said.
Rai highlighted that several customers are uncomfortable with the volatility and are, therefore, seeking more traditional products.
“We are keen to improve the protection quotient in our product portfolio. Our protection share has gone up in the last one year. Consumers today are significantly more aware of the need to have protection. What was a hard push five years ago is not like that anymore,” he said. Rai also asserted that the ongoing economic slowdown had no significant impact on the life insurance industry or on the company’s prospects.
A few days back, Edelweiss Tokio Life launched an online-only ULIP, Wealth Secure , said Rai. It is being seen as one of the most competitive products in this space in the industry. It has an affordable premium with an option to start savings even with Rs 1,000 per month.
“Our focus is to bring as much innovation as possible in our products. Zindagi Plus and now Wealth Secure Plus are two such initiatives launched with innovative features,” said Rai.
ETLI, which is a 51:49 joint venture between Edelweiss Financial Services and Tokio Marine Holdings Inc, one of the oldest insurance companies in Japan, will focus on being a multi-channel player.
“While continuing to grow our proprietary agency channel, we will also look to increase the bancassurance play in the coming days. Digital channel currently accounts for about 9 per cent of overall sales and we will look to further grow on that as well,” he said.
On capital-raising, Rai said the life insurer was comfortably placed and adequately capitalised. There are also no plans to raise fresh capital this fiscal or in 2020-21.
Asked if Edelweiss Tokio Life will contemplate a public listing in the next few years, Rai replied in the negative.
“We are not looking at a listing or an IPO for the next three to four years,” he said.