Resolution Insurance is Kenya’s fourth largest health insurer and a rising star in East Africa’s fast-expanding general insurance markets.
Entering the Kenyan market in 2002, Resolution was the first company to be registered as a Medical Insurance Provider. In a short time, the company grew to become a leading health insurer and a highly trusted brand, under the stewardship of an exceptional management team and entrepreneurial CEO, Peter Nduati. Today, the Resolution Group comprises Resolution Insurance in Kenya, Resolution Insurance in Tanzania and IAA-Resolution in Uganda, a partnership with IAA.
The company partners with a robust network of 800 medical service providers across East Africa, managing the diversified health insurance needs of corporates, social groups, families and individuals.
It has carved out a niche in serving the SME sector, reaching almost 50,000 emerging consumers though provision of health insurance to employees of SMEs and individual retail clients. LeapFrog’s actuarial and subject-matter experts are working with Resolution to develop new products, to stretch into broader general insurance lines, to grow its distribution network, and to strengthen its team and capabilities.
Says Peter Nduati, Resolution CEO, “We believe that LeapFrog’s dedicated operational investing approach, strong track record in health insurance, and emerging consumer expertise will add tremendous value. Importantly, LeapFrog shares our entrepreneurial ethos and commitment to financial inclusion.”
In emerging markets, much attention is paid to the phenomenon of the mushrooming metropolis. In reality though, the economic need of those who remain in the rural areas is even more pressing. Not only are incomes lower, but rural people are very difficult to reach with essential services.
One company that is proving its ability to reach this market is Thailand’s Syn Mun Kong Insurance Public Company Ltd (SMK), the country’s second-largest motor insurer and fifth largest general insurer. SMK is one of the most distinguished and trusted names in Thailand’s insurance industry.
The company has built extensive and diverse distribution into rural and semi-urban regions of Thailand, and reaches 7.5 million emerging consumers via 2.8 million customers. The operation is run by the highly regarded Dusdeesurapoj family.
Thailand is home to a population of over 62 million people, with 41% currently low income and underserved by financial services. Investing alongside Lombard Investments (Thailand’s outstanding private equity firm) LeapFrog has created an innovative partnership that will combine Lombard’s local market know-how with LeapFrog’s operational expertise in emerging markets insurance.
Back in 2009, when the Mahindra Group invited LeapFrog to invest in its Mahindra Insurance subsidiary, it was for two principle reasons: the insurance expertise LeapFrog would bring, and the shared ethos of the two organisations. Mahindra’s “Rise” philosophy, focused on building prosperity and improving lives, chimed perfectly with LeapFrog’s Profit with Purpose investment philosophy.
As Anand Mahindra, the Chairman of Mahindra Group, and world-leading businessman, put it at the time, “This partnership is a perfect alignment between our philosophy of driving positive change and LeapFrog’s socially conscious investment strategy. Together we will provide financial services that protect and enable millions of people to secure their future.”
Insurance penetration among India’s vast population remains extremely low, at 3.4% for life insurance and 0.7% for general insurance, indicative of a tremendous opportunity for growth and impact.
Mahindra Insurance is a fast-growing, high-impact company providing life, motor and health insurance. With a wide reach across rural and semi-rural India, it has a footprint in over 170,000 of India’s 650,000 villages. Mahindra Insurance currently reaches 10 million people with insurance, including 6.5 million low income consumers. The company offers insurance products for as little as $1 per month. With over 850 million people living in rural India, this is still just the beginning.
LeapFrog’s insurance expertise in this market has proved important in areas such as product development, digital and mobile strategy and market research. In fact, the Mahindra-LeapFrog partnership began with a health insurance product which has reached 550,000 people via 110,000 low income policy holders.
LeapFrog successfully exited Mahindra to XL Group in 2017 after significant value-add and impact.
Financial services in Sub-Saharan Africa is growing at about 19% annually, with East Africa a particular area of growth. Apollo is one of the region’s star performers when it comes to insurance.
The company, which operates through its wholly owned subsidiary APA, is active in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. Apollo sells various types of insurance policies, from life to motor to health to crop insurance. It is a pillar of Kenyan society, emphasizing affordable protection products to the underserved. LeapFrog invested in Apollo in 2011, forming a partnership that focused on creating a dedicated emerging consumer strategy and developing pioneering new health products.
Says Ashok Shah, Apollo CEO, “LeapFrog provided more than capital; the team helped us to scale our substantial health insurance offerings. They helped us launch a number of products for underserved clients, including last needs and hospital cash insurance. These innovations will be crucial not just for Apollo, but for regional development.”
LeapFrog successfully exited Apollo to Swiss Re, in a deal announced in October 2014. By then, Apollo was reaching 969,000 people of whom almost 725,000 were under-served emerging consumers. At exit, health insurance coverage had increased 26% to reach 72,500 people, while life insurance coverage had increased 170% to reach 490,000 people.
BIMA is the global leader in providing insurance through mobile technology. The business provides insurance distribution and underwriting to millions of low income people via highly innovative partnerships with major mobile network operators and financial services businesses. In the past, the traditional insurance industry has struggled to reach this vast market.
In just five years, BIMA has over 32 million subscribers in 14 countries, of which approximately 9 million people are reached with insurance products. BIMA’s customer research shows that 75% of their customers did not have access to insurance before. Globally, approximately 40% of customers are rural. In Ghana and Bangladesh, BIMA has doubled insurance penetration.
The business offers a range of affordable life, personal accident and health insurance products for low-income consumers. Since investing, LeapFrog has been instrumental in developing the company’s strategy in areas as diverse as product development, distribution, reinsurance and branding.
BIMA CEO Gustaf Agartson says, “We’re proud of our success so far, but really we believe we’re just at the start of this journey. Mobile technology has the power to transform people’s lives.”
LeapFrog sold a major stake in BIMA as part of a $96.6m investment by Allianz X, the digital investment unit of Allianz Group, the global insurer and asset manager in 2017.