By Chiamaka Ajeamo
Insurance underwriters has been urged to beam their searchlights more on the grassroots economy to capture retail businesses in order to tap the massive insurance opportunities in the that segment and further enhance penetration rate in the country.
Managing Director of Mutual Benefits Assurance Plc, Femi Asenuga, made the call while speaking to insurance journalists in Lagos.
According to Asenuga, Nigeria’s insurance penetration rate is still an eyesore when compared to the huge population of the country, hence, the need for operators to focus on the grassroots through retail insurance businesses.
Speaking to Insurance Journalists recently in Lagos, the Mutual Benefits boss disclosed that a huge underbanked and unbanked Nigerians exist in the informal sector of which insurance firms can leverage to bring them into the financial service space.
In the light of the above, he said, this has been the ultimate goal of his company right from inception, a development that has made the firm a reference point for investors and stakeholders in the area of microinsurance.
He said, “We are restless when it comes to ensuring the underserved and unserved Nigerians with financial solutions in the area of risk business in the country. We have become a reference point in retail business in the country and we are a reference point for investors. We are restless when it comes to product development. Years ago, we got approval for 36 products; this has never been done by any company in Nigeria.”
Affirming that there is still much work to be done in covering risks and growing the penetration level of insurance in the country, he urged the media to sustain the good work of deepening insurance awareness and sensitisation through informed and qualitative reporting.
For his part, the Managing Director/CEO, Mutual Benefits Life Assurance Limited, Ademola Ifagbayi, vowed that the underwriting firm would continue to prioritise its claims obligations, noting that the firm had paid claims amounting to several billions of naira in recent years, which was a testament to its fidelity.
Ifagbayi, who emphasised the importance of having any insurance policy, implored Nigerians to patronise the firm .