On Monday, October 7th 2013, Apollo Munich Health Insurance launched its bancassurance alliance with Canara Bank, a Bangalore-based public sector lender. This bancassurance tie-up aims at distributing the insurance products through a bank's network. Apart from this, it shall also make use of its business correspondents’ network to take health insurance to unbanked regions. This tie up is first of its kind for Apollo Munich, since the day of its inception. In the course of this tie-up, the bank will hand out Apollo Munich Health Insurance products across its 4,200 branches. In this way the bank will act as a corporate agent for selling these products, as stated by Apollo Munich Health Insurance Chairman, Prathap C. Reddy.
This tie-up is an ideal instance of a recent IRDA directive, according to which banks are permissible to act as license allies of non-bank promoted insurers. Through this tie up, Canara Bank is targeting a premium of Rs. 100 Crores by the end of next year. Meanwhile, Apollo Munich expects that its gross written premium shall grow much slower in this year due to de-growth in the group insurance business.
Furthermore, Canara Bank, Chairman and Managing Director, R K Dubey stated, "We've tied up with Apollo Munich to offer health insurance products. We'll offer some tailor-made products to customers". And, according to Antony Jacob, CEO, Apollo Munich Health Insurance, this happens to be the first tie-up by a non-bank promoted health insurer with a bank. And, this happened soon after IRDA relaxed the norms for segments beyond general and life insurance. Through this tie-up with Canara Bank, Apollo Munich Health Insurance is determined to expand its reach to 50 million customers of Canara Bank’s 4,200 branches.
The CMD of Canara Bank, Mr. R. K. Dubey, said that, “We provide additional value to our customers by offering health insurance. The penetration of health insurance in semi-urban and rural areas is very limited. With 65 per cent of our branches located in such places, we hope to provide health cover to a large number of uncovered customers.”
Apollo Munich has a wide range of insurance solutions for the masses at large. It continues to abide by its motto, “Lets Uncomplicate”, and offers simple and easy to understand insurance policies. All its policies are written in simple language, so that an individual can understand it easily and have a clearer picture of what all is being offered by a particular plan. As insurance is considered as an investment for one’s future wellbeing, Apollo Munich encourages every individual to be aware of all that a policy offers, including things like what sort of coverage a policy offers him or her and what benefits will they be offered with.
Especially for Canara Bank Customers, Apollo Munich Health Insurance has launched its two flagship products. One is, Easy Health Group and second is, Optima Restore. The coverage being offered under Easy Health Group plan is upto 2, 00,000 per annum. And, a cover of up to Rs. 10 lakh is being offered under Optima Restore. Easy Health has a single pricing to cover family members of all age groups and no medical tests are required to get enrolled for this policy. According to Optima Restore plan, the entire sum insured will be restored in case it gets exhausted during the tenure. Along with this, the cover also gets doubled in case an individual has not made any claim for the first two years.
Both these products offer people with maximum coverage, so that an individual is able to reap maximum benefits when dealing with any sort of medical emergency. Where on one hand, Easy health is the basic product offered by Apollo Munich Health insurance, on the other, Optima Restore is the unbelievable product. It offers an unbelievable restore benefit to its buyer, according to which the entire sum insured gets restored in case a person uses it within a given tenure.
While talking about future plans, Antony Jacob, CEO Apollo Munich says, that, “the company plans to introduce specific products for lifestyle diseases like diabetes and hypertension for Canara Bank customers”. Furthermore, in future, the company wishes to widen its reach by having similar tie-ups with other banks. For now, Apollo Munich expects to clock a growth of around 15 per cent in its premium this year to over Rs 700 Crore, against 30 per cent growth last year. Company CEO, Antony Jacob attributes de-growth in the group insurance segment for the slower growth in GWP.
One should take note that, according to Apollo Munich Health Insurance, CEO, Antony Jacob, “the business mix between retail and group insurance has been 60:40 earlier, but going forward it could be 75:25. The corporate insurance segment has become unprofitable with the competition from the general insurance companies. The margins have eroded in group insurance and we will continue to focus on retail”.
It should also be noted that Apollo Munich is a standalone health insurer, which operates all over India. In addition to this, it also offers innovative travel and accident insurance for all citizens of India. Nowadays, with availability of online insurance, an individual can buy insurance online with just a few mouse clicks.
Furthermore, it also enables an individual to view other health insurance plans and do a comparative study, so as to choose the plan that is most suitable. Through online insurance, an individual can get insured instantly and gain in-depth knowledge about all it. This, in turn saves a lot of time.
The main aim behind this tie-up is to offer health insurance coverage to all Canara Bank Customers. Both Apollo Munich Health Insurance and Canara Bank will work together under a Corporate Agency model.