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Singapore Life PHL eyes 100,000 new clients in 2021

THE local business of Singapore Life Pte. Ltd. expects to gain more than 100,000 new customers by the end of this year.

Singlife Philippines CEO Rien Hermans expressed confidence the firm would be able to continuously grow its customer base as digital insurance becomes a “fast-growing industry” in the country.

Hermans said he is optimistic about the future of digital insurance in the Philippines given the country’s young population and growth of per capita income.

To note, the country’s per capita income fell from $3,512 in 2019 to $3,373 last year. Compare this with Vietnam’s per capita income in 2019 of $3,416 that hit $3,497.51 last year.

Hermans told the BusinessMirror the company’s expected client-base spike would be achieve through “increasing our reach and having different propositions.”

By doing so, likewise, the executive said the business would have “a foundation for further growth.”

“We offer financial solutions that fall under three distinct categories: medical cost protection, income protection and savings and investments,” he added.

Hermans said the company has “a lot of ambitions this year and much higher expectations for the future as we want to have an active relationship with 10 percent of the customers in the market by 2025 (approximately 0.5 million customers).”

For this year, Hermans said they are aiming to roll out their full suite of protection products on GCash, activate at least one new partner and launch their direct-to-customer initiative.

“Among the products that Singlife Philippines will be launching in GCash include “Cash for Income Loss” (Any Cause), “Cash for Medical Cost” and “Cash for Later.”

“After these, we will transition to products that meet the basic financial needs of people in a more comprehensive way, with our customers in control, without penalties when they stop or make changes, and with offers that fit their needs and their budget,” Hermans said.

In the coming years, he said they will also be focused on developing a new market segment and building a stronger customer base versus maximizing premium income.

“Our view is that with the right products and exemplary service, premium will follow.”

Hermans added the company wants to focus on the “underserved” middle-income market which has an above average monthly income of P25,000 up to around P120,000.

“From research, we know that this market is not homogenous and has different segments. What is common though is that this market has been underserved for the past decennia and products offered to them rarely met their promises,” he said.

He also said Singlife Philippines posted “remarkable” performance last year despite the pandemic as it rolled out two protection products on GCash that were both well received by the public.

Singlife Philippines only received its license to operate from the Insurance Commission in February last year.

“Launching our no fuss protection products on GCash was a great first step for us, and the customer feedback we’ve been getting has been very positive and encouraging,” he said.

Hermans said their “Cash for Dengue Costs,” which initially included a free Covid-19 cover for 10,000 customers, “sold out very fast” that they decided to extend it to the first 20,000 customers instead.

For P700 per year, customers can be covered from unforeseen medical expenses due to Covid-19 and dengue worth up to P421,500 under the “Cash for Dengue Costs” product. Its multi-level benefit includes positive test result allowance, confinement allowance, and medical cost reimbursement for more severe cases.

Meanwhile, Hermans said their second product, “Cash for Income Loss” (accidents), was bought by more than 1,000 customers in just two weeks of its launch, with no promotions.

This product replaces up to 100 percent of the client’s income for 36 months if he or she gets disabled or dies because of an accident.

“This further strengthens our view of the existence of a large segment of customers who are underserved,” Hermans said. “These are the people who understand the value of insurance, but they have no access to it, or they feel that the traditional products are just too complex, too expensive, and require too long of a commitment.”

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