Freeman Cebu Business

Insurance firm sees millennial market as likely growth driver

Ehda M. Dagooc - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Financial services provider AXA Philippines is banking on the highly informed and financial-savvy millennials to fuel its growth in the (still) slow moving insurance industry in the country.

Reaching out to the millennial group would accelerate the goal of the global insurance firm to reach at least one million Filipinos insured in the next four years, said Marie Raymundo, AXA Philippines chief distribution manager, in a press conference held yesterday during the formal opening of its Bohol branch, the 9th AXA office in the Visayas.

AXA global insurance, which is partnering with the Metrobank Group in their Philippine operations, is positioning to take advantage of the expanding middle class, and self-sufficient younger generation to be financially literate and would regard long term investments such as insurance as part of their top priorities.

Geoffrey Tan, AXA Philippines chief agency officer said that the company recognized the potential of this thick age group in the Philippines to drive growth for the company. In the recent years, AXA Philippines had been adjusting its operational systems and different approaches to fit this modern clientele and market landscape.

Aside from expanding its physical footprint to widen its market reach and educate more Filipinos to be financially literate, the company is also constantly improving its holistic digital infrastructure to be more accessible in the online platform.

In 2015, annual premium income in its Visayas operations reached P283 million. Raymundo is confident that its strengthened Visayas operations with extra focus on enticing the young market will help boost sales, which stood at P1.1 billion as of end of first quarter this year.

The strong interest of young Filipinos to join the insurance business, as evident by the increasing number of licensed insurance professionals within the millennial age brackets, is also expected to get the attention of young earners to get insured.

To date, the over 100-year-old insurance industry in the Philippines shared by over 40 players, covers only an estimated 18 percent of the 100 million Filipinos, this already include insurance coverage imposed by employers as part of their benefits.

With a median age of 23 years, Filipinos are considered among the youngest in the world.  A median age of 23 years means that half of the population is aged below 23, while the other half is above 23.

Since many Filipinos are relatively young and belong to the so-called Millennial generation, the country is in the best position to reap the demographic dividend.

The demographic dividend, according to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), is “a boost in economic productivity that occurs when there are growing numbers of people in the work force relative to the number of dependents.”

AXA Philippines, hopes that the country could finally move to financial management maturity,  influenced largely by the inquisitive, open-minded, widely informed and highly ambitious millennial  market. (FREEMAN)



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