These are the Next Big Things in Insurtech Believes this Insurance Top Honcho It is important to embrace technology which brings efficiency and improves customer experience

By Sanchita Dash

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Canara HSBC OBC Life Insurance

Gone are the days when the insurance industry struggled to find customers even though the agents were going from door-to-door with bundles of files. Today, Insurtech has insured the progress of the industry with paperless transactions and better reach to Tier II and Tier III cities.

With the increasing influence of technology, insurance industry has seen a surge in the number of start-ups coming up in the segment.

Entrepreneur India caught up with Anuj Mathur, Chief Executive Officer, Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Company Limited as he spoke about how the insurance industry is poised to grow over the coming years and what are the next big things to watch out for in Insurtech.

Increasing Awareness for Life Insurance

The insurance industry has witnessed a decent growth in recent past and presently, is at a very promising juncture. Mathur explains that with a substantial flow of household savings into the financial savings, a good chunk flows into Insurance products.

According to reports, the industry is estimated to grow 15-20% in the next 3-5 years and Mathur believes that the growth would essentially come from the Tier 2 & 3 cities (apart from the Tier 1 cities) as the awareness towards this critical product line is increasing. "The introduction of Point of Sales products will boost the life insurance penetration. The Industry will have to work jointly in ensuring that the Life Insurance solutions are made available to all segments of the population. Increasing awareness of Life Insurance and customizing solutions for the need is what the Industry will have to work for," said Mathur.

Leveraging the Agility of Start-ups for Newer Technologies

The rapid pace of technological advancement in each sector is creating newer opportunities. It is important to embrace newer technology which not only brings efficiency but also improves the customer experience manifold believes Mathur. At Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance, they too are adapting to new emerging technologies. "We are using mobility to handle the geographical challenges and are working towards being available to our customers and distributors through all digital channels. We are looking at creating an automated solution which covers all phases of a customer lifecycle from prospecting to onboarding to Service," he said.

In the insurance sector, there are many start-ups that are also acting as marketplaces for insurance policies or even roboadvisory firms that are helping users take an informed decision. Talking about working with start-ups, he said, "They bring with them a lot of agility and also willingness to explore newer technologies and concepts. However, the challenge lies in its integration with the larger systems in the ecosystem."

Big Data and Cloud Computing to be Big in Insurtech

The Industry has already initiated various steps to build and strengthen the digital infrastructure at an enterprise level to capitalize on the opportunity presented. According to Mathur, self-service through digital platforms, engaging customers through the life cycle for enhanced loyalty are areas that will see significant development over the next 2-3 years. "Big data analytics, cloud computing and mobility are other areas which will see big investment and movement in the next few years," he said.

One Million Customers by 2020

With a strong presence in the Tier - 2 and Tier 3 cities, Mathur said that the product needed in these cities are different than that of metros. The combination of the right products with their vast distribution network will help them penetrate deeper in the country. "We have launched a Point of Sale (POS) product in the regional rural bank of Canara which offers the convenience of over the counter product that not only offers life cover but also returns all premiums paid upon the survival of the term," he said.

They have the vision to have one million customers by 2020 and with a 9-year experience in the bancassurance space; they believe they can reach out to these customers. "The next wave of our growth will also ride on the Digital platform which addresses needs of a specific segment which prefers to deal in a non-physical manner and has a huge potential," he said.

Sanchita Dash

Entrepreneur Staff

Former Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India

In the business of news for 5 years now. Making my way across India thanks to my career. A media graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, I have earlier worked with Deccan Chronicle (South India's leading English daily), T-Hub (India's largest incubator) and Anthill Ventures (a speed-scaling platform). 

Stories, movies and PJs are my thing. 

If you hear 'The Office' opening score randomly, don't worry it's just my phone ringing. 


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