On the 26th of September your IIG’s International 2022 delegation set off for a trip that has come to be known as the “Ultimate Networking Experience” for the South African short-term insurance industry. After 2 years of a pause because pandemic globally, when life finally opened up all roads to Europe, to Madrid and Milan specifically. The culture, people, and cuisine was just as the delegates expected, and the hospitality we got made us feel welcome. Upon arrival in each city, delegates were given a tour to orient with the city, and it was an amazing experience to learn about the history of the city through its people and architecture.
- Some learnings on how insurers can invest into data-driven solutions in order to manage claims costs as well manage the severity of accidents in the motor industry
- Innovation drives a lot of what we see within their markets. One of these being insurance cover for warranties and indemnity which has become very relevant and topical in today’s changing and growing M&A landscape
- How compulsory insurance in some lines of business and for some risks, when managed well, could be one of the best ways in which businesses and individuals could bounce back following times of adversity
- Data and information is at the core of the functioning of any industry and Spain has a business that just focusing on data collection and sharing with the industry for a fee. This makes decision-making much more targeted, precise and if backed by data, improves the quality thereof
- The role that bancassurance plays in both markets is significant as a distribution model alternate to brokers and agents. Brokers still play a key and greater role in both markets.
- There is an increased use of technology and digitalization underwriting, for pre-and post-loss measures in order for people to be safe. One of the most fascinating tools demonstrated was allowing for risk surveys to be done online and the possibility to use the same framework to get estimated values of property
- In Spain in particular, the state insurer covers more perils in addition to what our own SASRIA covers. One of the key components being that it is compulsory allowing them to build capacity and participate in more risks, including some CAT loses.
- Partnerships, Joint Ventures and consolidations are not uncommon for businesses foe them to tap into other markets and bring their expertise to the fore. Most importantly, it allows for synergy and complementing of areas of strength for the respective businesses
- Risk analysis tools at a macro and micro level are being used for competitive advantage in this ever changing business environment . They are also good and are useful to navigate operating within different jurisdictions
- The relevance, importance and evolving nature of regulation, not only in the insurance, but the financial services industry at large
- Insurance plays a key role in society in general and also ensures that certain levels of economic development go ahead by providing financial security in the event of the unfortunate and unforeseen happening.
Something that was special were the activities and time to get to know each other with 2 of the nights being used to have local cuisine and treated with local culture up close simultaneously. Italy provided a good dose of the flamingo dance experience, something that was exhilarating to see in person. In Italy we the opportunity to dine at family restaurant that’s been around for almost 5 decades, and used the same evening to have ‘prize giving’ which was an opportunity of appreciation of how each of us had made the trip special for others. The pleasant surprise of the trip was the opportunity to watch the match between Inter-Milan and Barcelona live at the San Siro Stadium, which both soccer and non-soccer lovers agree was an experience to remember.
One of the most evident things on the trip is that the industry is becoming younger and at a general level, there is a deliberate investment from the more experienced colleagues to promote the integrity and continuity of the industry through investing in younger talent. Overall, what the delegates took out is how South Africa as a market compares to more developed markets. We are not where we should be, and our learnings in these interactions push us to think outside the box and come up with better ways to serve the industry’s stakeholders and policyholders at large. Something amazing is brewing from some of the interactions we had, watch the space!
A hearty thank you for the businesses that allowed us to see the local market through their lenses and perspective. More important, they provided us mostly with information that one cannot just search on the internet, which made it even more valuable and worthwhile. In Spain, gracias to Mapfre and CESVIMap, Solunion, Marsh, Deloitte Consulting and Swiss Re. For our Italian leg, a huge grazie Munich Re, Chubb, Generali and Marsh.
We already have enquiries about the next destination and the dates thereof. All we can reveal for now is that the date are more or less the same with a 3 week allowance and the destination i. the announcement will come in Feb/March 2023 but planning starts now. Reach out to the office firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Finally, big thank you to our sponsor Santam and all the businesses that sent delegates for an experience of a lifetime with fellow industry colleagues.
Article written by: Bukhosi Khumalo