Business News of 2014-01-08

Airtel Insurance set to boost insurance penetration in Ghana

Airtel Ghana has launched Airtel Insurance, a value added service (VAS) to give its customers free insurance cover as part of a move to boost insurance penetration in Ghana.
Available statistics at the National Insurance Commission (NIC) indicates just about six to seven percent of Ghanaians have insurance cover, while a whopping 94% remain uncovered.
This is because the traditional insurance companies have steered away from the risk associated with poor and average people.
But Airtel Ghana has partnered with the internationally acclaimed MicroEnsure and Ghana’s Enterprise Life to design, administer and underwrite a premium-free insurance scheme that provides cover for Airtel customers on monthly basis, based on how much a customer spends the previous month.
The scheme, available on subscription at short code *580#, provides cover for life, accident and for hospital bills, and it takes the usage of GHC5 and above every month to qualify.
Yaw Antwi Boadu is Head of Value Added Service at Airtel Ghana and he told journalists for usage between GHC5 and GHC9.99 in a particular month, the user qualifies for GHC250 life cover, GHC250 accident cover and GHC25 hospital cash the following month.
He said for usage between GHC10 and GHC19.99, the coverage is GHC500 each for life and accident and GHC50 hospital cash, while between GHC20 and GHC49.99 usage qualifies the user for GHC1,250 life and accident coverage and GHC100 hospital cash.
“For the big spenders who spend anything from GHC50 and above in a particular month, they qualify for GHC2,500 life and accident coverage, and for GHC150 hospital cash the following month,” he said.
Yaw Antwi Boadu said for each year, there is a limited amount of GHC1,000 hospital cash available for each customer to claim.
He assured customers that the cover is totally free and Airtel does not charge customers higher tariffs for registering for the scheme, adding that the company had taken upon itself to pay the premiums on behalf of customers in order to help boost insurance cover in Ghana.
Airtel is working with MicroEnsure as the company that administers the scheme, and responsible for doing the documentation on claims prior to payment.
Country Manager of MicroEnsure, Adjoa Kisiwaa Boateng has assured Airtel customers that it is committed to working out claims to be paid within three days, once the customer presents genuine documents.
“We are pro-claim and we have done this for years and for millions of people around the world so you can rest assured that your claims will be paid promptly provided you do your part of the bargain in time,” she said.
Enterprise Life is the underwriter for the scheme, so they take premiums from Airtel on behalf of customers and pay the actual cash to the customers in times of claims.
Jacqueline Benyi is General Manager – Operations at Enterprise Life and she told journalists Enterprise was glad to ride on the back on Airtel to raise its customer level and help deepen insurance penetration in Ghana.
She urged Ghanaians to take advantage of the scheme to get free insurance cover through Airtel.
Meanwhile, it is instructive to note the MicroEnsure partnered the start of a similar scheme on Tigo, which is now being administered by Tigo itself and underwritten by another local insurance company.
MicroEnsure says they are using several other avenues such as insurance on bank loans for SMEs and other yet to be announced channels to distribute cheap insurance schemes as a way of boosted insurance penetration in Ghana.
Source: myjoyonline
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