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Chuks Udo Okonta
Heirs Holdings an investment management company with investments in the strategic sectors of the African economy, including financial services; hospitality; power; energy; technology and healthcare entered the insurance sector to improve lives and transform the continent, the Group Chairman, Tony Elumelu, has revealed.
He made the revelation at the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) 60th Anniversary Colloquium and Book launch in Lagos, stating that the quest to improve lives and transform the continent, was why last year the group entered the insurance sector with the introduction of Heirs Life Assurance and Heirs Insurance Limited.
He maintained that the insurance companies are committed to providing simpler and smarter insurance to the market.
According to him these two companies complement Heirs Insurance Brokers (HIB), stressing that these three companies allow the group to exploit synergies and efficiently service the Nigerian insurance market.
“You may know me more for my banking career as the Chairman of the United Bank for Africa (UBA) Africa’s global bank present in 20 African countries including France, USA, UK, and the UAE.
“And the catalytic work we do at the Tony Elumelu Foundation in empowering young Africans across the 54 countries on the continent.
“So far, over 15,000 young African entrepreneurs have benefitted directly from the Foundation through the provision of a $5,000 non-refundable seed capital, alongside business training, mentorship, and market access to these young African entrepreneurs,” he submitted.
Speaking further on why the Group focused on the Insurance sector, Elumelu highlighted the importance of insurance, stating that insurance plays pivotal role in any society, by providing the much-needed safety and security.
He stressed that through insurance, large volumes of fund are mobilised by way of premiums for investments, spurring the growth and development of the economy.
According to him, with insurance, families receive financial security, assets are protected against hazards, and businesses continue to run with the assurance of financial compensation in the event of a loss.
“In a nutshell, insurance keeps families and their possessions intact, provides financial safeguards for businesses, creates employment, and generally advances the economy,” he added.
Elumelu maintained that an economy is therefore as advanced as its insurance sector, stressing that more importantly, in an economy going through inflation and a widening poverty gap, insurance is more important now than ever and that is why the Group decided to introduce smart, simple insurance to the Nigerian market to better service the underserved market.