Insurance industry think-tank with Jegede Olatunji

Jegede Kehinde Olatunji, National Vice President, Association of Registered Insurance Agents of Nigeria

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In specific terms how can governments help promote insurance growth and development?

It is imperative that government had made some products compulsory, but enforcement is not there . To show commitment to the growth of the insurance, government herself must be a good example for others to follow. The rules are only there for the compulsory insurance such as:

* Builders Liability Insurance

* Employers Liability Insurance

* Motor 3rd Party Liability Insurance

* Employers Liability Insurance (Group Life)

* Occupiers Liability Insurance

* Healthcare Professional Indemnity Insurance.

But enforcement on the part of government is still lacking.

3rd party motor insurance for instant, not all the States governments take it serious.

To grow and develop the sector need a serious attention than leap service government is playing.

The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) needs to be well empowered to carry out regulatory roles for which it was established.

A purposive action must be put in place to prevent winging-up of the companies while mismanagement by any underwriter should be severely dealt with through existing laws.

Frame work to fight fake insurance practitioners and penalty for de-reputating genuine claims must also be enforce by the government.

Mainwhile, introduction of risk management or insurance as a subject in our secondary school is another thing our government can do, it should also be made a compulsory subject, so as to catch them young and to learn important of insurance.

What should be done in term of regulation to accelerate insurance growth?

On this NAICOM needs to be empowered to sanctions erring operators in the industry.

Special taskforce in which membership needs to be drawn from different organisations within the industry -: Association of Registered Insurance Agents (ARIAN); Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB); Nigerian Insurers Association (NIA); Institute of Loss Adjusters of Nigeria (ILAN); Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN); Insurance and Pension Editors of Nigeria (IPEN) amongst others, should be in place to enforce insurance laws.

Most importantly, Insurance Act should be periodically repealed to meet societal change and challenges.

Enforcement of the compulsory insurance cannot be overemphasized.

Professional career should be encouraged among the insurance agents. The government should aid establishment of Chartered Institute of Retail and Insurance Agents (CIRIA). With this, young Nigerians will be attracted and knowledge gab will be bridged. The institute will serve as marketing institute of the industry and promoting knowledge on insurance.

What should insurance operators consider and esteem in product development?

On products development, operators need to go back to the core risk products that are economical for people to buy.

Our products need to be conformed with prevailing challenges while the wordings for our certificate should be one that self explanatory.

More, retail products in both life and non-life need to be designed to address the challenges of medium and small scale businesses, as this is going to aid penetration.

It is a fact that only few underwriters have come up with retail products, the trend needs to change because the market for the retail is enormous and there must be conscious effort to develop products that addressed their need.

It is imperative to design products in line with trade and professional risks as well as individual and group, let take for example, funeral in Nigeria that is urgent, because death comes unannounced and it does require a lot of money to buried the death here.

Term assurance, can be designed in various ways to meet specific need like death, disability and medical that would be affordable for ordinary citizens to buy, as we know that insurance is a game of number and we have the number in Nigeria, with insurance penetration longevity will be aided among people while businesses will strive and investment at various stages shall grow.

How should claims payment be used as a tool for business growth?

Claim payment is bedrock of insurance without missing words, any company who is up and doing in genuine claims settlement should be loud and celebrated by the regulator.

While companies need to frequently publish what they pay as claims on quarterly basis.

Various underwriters need to let their marketing team have access to claims evidence, but confidentiality principle must be adhere to, with this they will use it as marketing tool.

Another way by which claims payment can be used as a tool for business growth is to have a reasonable time for the claim settlement, this time should be communicated to all parties involved with this effort, the company will be appreciated while it is going to aid re-buying as well as continuous patronage.

How should insurers use technology to onboard the uninsured population?

We are in era of technology in which any corporate organisation that wants to have an edge can’t do without.

Presently in Nigeria, we have high number of young population and they are technological driven and worth to say that these young Nigerians want to get things done at their fingers tips, while time of going to offices before solving issues or buying a product is gradually disappearing.

Our products need to be more accessible online in which people can go and shop for them.

More so, there is the need to development different applications that are handy by various communication devices which marketers can use to sell their products.

Adverts on social media like Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, Twitter amongst others should be embraced. Having “ads” on internet to advertise products will go a long way to onboard the uninsured population.

How should insurers leverage corporate social responsibility to onboard the uninsured?

More need to be done in this area, some time we do overlooked rural areas without knowing that more population is residing there and many immigrants come from the rural to urban, if one or more projects are done in some of our communities by the insurance companies, it will create awareness on the importance of insurance, it will not be strange to them the essence of having insurance covers.

We should also know that CSR is a way of giving back to the society and planting self into the mind of the insurable population as well as onboarding uninsured population.

Now that our government has not been able to meet certain needs, we can play a significant role to compliment government efforts, we have locals that need water borehole, solar power that would be branded in the company name, with this more awareness is created and we will onboard uninsured public.

The less privilege in our society can enjoy our hands of assistance that will be well covered by the media houses with this, increase in patronage will be witness in the industry.

What should insurance firms do to remain visible and endear themselves to the public?

An adage says ” out of sight, is out of mind,” continuous advertisement of products with the use of social media is key and can’t be overlooked.

It is equally important to state that Nigeria is a retail market for any firm to remain visible and endear herself to the public must follow the trend.

All insurance companies must as a matter of urgency give attention to retail market, not now that a lot of small, medium and large scale enterprises are springing up.

Also, solution provision goes a long way for firms to remains visible. It is a fact that some long time products in the industry are no more addressing the insurable needs of the people, not even now that our economy is not showing a brighter green light.

Moreover, for individual insurance firm to be attracted to the public, must dive into a short term premium income products.

What should be done to grow the retail marketing strategy?

What to do to grow retail market and to ensure penetration of market are many.

Products development in line with the need of the retail market, this I have previously address in this interview.

Diversification of channels of products distribution, firms can go into partnership with groceries supermarket and chain-stores to sell some of these products.

The importance of having a robust career path for the retail insurance agency will go a long way while dichotomy in-house should be addressed so as to attract young Nigerians graduates into selling of insurance.

Like I have mentioned earlier, online retail products should be developed so that potential customers can access them like 3rd party motor insurance.

Without missing words, it is important to open small offices in towns and cities to be closer to the prospects that needs our products, so as to grow retail market.

What impact would enforcement of insurance laws have on industry’s performance?

It is going to increase industry Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to the economy. It will aid claim settlement as more fund will be available.

With the enforcement of mandatory insurance products penetration will become easier and relevance of the industry to the well being of the people will be more noted while it is going to arose consciousness of the people to the risks they are facing and the need to have insurance to address them.

It will increase people confidence in insurance industry because government is going to pay more attention to the issues in the industry than leap attention it currently giving.

More investors will be attracted to the industry as the companies performance shall witness geometry growth and this is going to make many to buy insurance stocks while we will have strong and healthy firms in the industry.

How should insurers grow operations through collaborations? What type of collaboration does the industry needs presently?

Our collaboration should be strategic, there are areas we can look into like Real Estate, mortgage institutes and commercial banks, we also have some professional bodies as well as regulatory agencies that we can collaborate with and grow our operations.

There are trade unions and associations through which insurers can grow operations.

Jegede Kehinde Olatunji is the National Vice President, Association of Registered Insurance Agents of Nigeria (ARIAN).

He had his Tertiary Education from the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State and Tansian University, Umuya , Anambra State, College of Education, Oro Kwara State, where he obtained B. Sc, Higher Diploma and NCE respectively.

He started his career with Union Assurance Limited in 2004 as an Executive Marketer and rose to the position of Unit Manager.

He joined Mutual Benefits Assurance Plc as one of the pioneer members of Retail Arm in 2011 as a Retail Manager/ Branch Manager, as well worked in Lasaco Assurance Plc as an Agency manager.

He is presently working with NSIA Insurance Limited as a Senior Agency Manager.

He is currently the National Vice President of the Association of Registered Insurance Agents of Nigeria.

Jegede contested to represent Ikeja constituency 2 in 2023 election, on AAC platform.

He is a community leader.

Olatunji is happily married with children.

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