Future Generali to open 100 new branches

Chennai, June 30 (IANS) Private life insurer Future Generali India will expand its distribution network by opening around 100 branches and sign up bancassurance deals to close this year with a fresh premium of Rs.1,200 crore, a top company official said Wednesday.

‘We will be adding 100 new branches to our existing network of 91 branches. We will also increase the agency force by 21,000 to 65,000. In addition, talks are on with couple of banks to sign up bancassurance deals (banks selling insurance polices),’ Chief Operating Officer Balram Sarma told reporters here.

According to him, the Rs.480 crore premium income company will also come out with new plans for its mallassurance – retail outlets of companies like Pantaloon selling insurance policies.

The company gets nearly eight percent of its business from this channel selling low ticket sized policies to a large number of people.

According to Sarma the average premium per policy (APPP) for the company is around Rs.15,000.

Asked about the impact of the new guidelines for unit linked insurance plans (ULIP) issued by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), Sarma said: ‘It adds weight on the companies. The spreading of the acquisition costs or marketing costs over the first five years and guaranteeing a return of 4.5 percent on pension and annuity policies will put companies in difficulty.’

‘We are currently working out the impact of the revised norms. None of our current set of ULIPs meets the revised guidelines. We will be filing the redrafted policies with IRDA before September,’ he added.

Sarma said the company had settled 430 claims out of the 696 lodged with it.

‘The policies are less than two years old and procedures like investigation have to be completed before the claims are settled,’ he added.

He said the company enjoys a policy persistency or renewal ratio of around 70 percent.

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