SINGAPORE, Oct 29 (The Straits Times/ANN): Insurer NTUC Income is expanding its operations to Indonesia, Vietnam and Malaysia through strategic partnerships with leading insurance companies in these countries.
The partnerships will be built on the insurance-as-a-service model, in which insurers deliver personalised insurance products to the customer in a simplified way while taking into account when and how they require them.
NTUC Income said on Thursday (Oct 28) that it will work with PT Central Asia Financial (Jagadiri) in Indonesia, Post and Telecommunication Joint Stock Insurance Corporation (PTI) in Vietnam and VSure Tech Sdn. Bhd (VSure) in Malaysia.
These three companies will launch NTUC Income's rain insurance plan Droplet across cities including Jakarta, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Kuala Lumpur.
Droplet offers insurance to consumers who book a ride via ride-hailing platforms such as Grab. It provides a payout when prices on these platforms surge due to rain.
Citing research by German data company Statista, NTUC Income said that in 2020, the total market value of ride hailing in South-east Asia was estimated to be US$11 billion (S$14.82 billion), with Indonesia topping the list (S$6.73 billion), followed by Singapore (S$2.69 billion), Vietnam (S$2.16 billion) and Malaysia (S$1.48 billion).
"This tremendous demand for ride-hailing services among South-East Asians has given rise to the need for 'rainsurance' like Droplet to protect consumers financially against price surges on these platforms, particularly during the monsoon season," NTUC Income's chief executive Andrew Yeo said. said.
It also noted the strong demand for digital consumption in South-east Asia, citing a report by Facebook and Bain and Company. Since the start of the pandemic, according to the report, an additional 70 million people in the region have become digital consumers and have been making online purchases.
Malaysia's Vsure's chief executive Eddy Wong said of Droplet: "Malaysians are no strangers to rain, and we believe protection against ride hailing pricing surge during rainy days is a great example of insurance reimagined to be palatable for the consumers and their modern lifestyles of today."
Droplet serves as a way to educate underserved Malaysian communities about the importance of staying protected, he added.
Mr Yeo said the overseas venture is a natural next step in the company's strategic growth plan.
"The market potential of countries like Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam is huge, given their relatively young populations and high mobile penetration rates.
"Considering their large geographical distribution areas, I believe that these markets are especially primed for new digital insurance propositions that are enabled by technology."
He added that the company aims to draw inspiration from its partners and regional consumers, and will look into co-creating digital insurance offerings that will ultimately benefit Singaporeans.
"We will continue to keep our focus on empowering better financial well-being among Singaporeans through sharper innovations and personalised experiences." - The Straits Times/ANN