Prudential Assurance to focus on personal covers


  • Business
  • Tuesday, 08 Apr 2003

By JACK WONG IN KUCHING

PRUDENTIAL Assurance Malaysia Bhd (PAMB), which chalked up an impressive 42% growth in new life insurance last year, is zooming in on the personal insurance (PA) sector. 

According to its chief executive officer (CEO) Ng Keng Hooi, the company planned to sell one million PA policies in the next three years. 

“This year we want to focus on the PA sector as Malaysians are not adequately provided with PA coverage. Many people have died or have been made disabled by accidents but they were not covered by PA policies,'' he told reporters in Kuching on Sunday. 

PAMB, a subsidiary of Britain-based Prudential plc, recorded RM333mil in new business (annualised premium) sales last year, with Sabah and Sarawak contributing significantly to the fast growth. 

“In 2002, new business in Sabah grew by an astounding 87% to RM10mil while in Sarawak, it grew by 57% to RM33mil.  

“New business from the two states contributed about 13% to total sales,” Ng said, adding that the persistency rate in the first year was over 90%. 

He said PAMB had captured 20% share of new business sales nationwide, and was top in Kuching and Sibu in such sales. 

The company's 42% growth in new business, he added, was much higher than the industry average of 11%. 

Moh Wung Ming from Sibu, who won the company-wide top agency manager award, registered direct agency sales of over RM8mil, the highest in PAMB's history.  

The company's top agent, Ngui Chiew Jan from Kuching, turned in with more than RM1mil sales last year.  

Ng said there were 13 agencies in Sabah and Sarawak, which each achieved over RM1mil in sales last year. 

“In addition, our east Malaysian team has developed 118 PRUcenturions – highly successful agents who have each recorded at least RM100,000 in new business sales last year.''  

He said the company was excited with its tremendous growth in Sabah and Sarawak, and planned to penetrate smaller towns like Sri Aman. 

Ng said as only 30% of Malaysians were covered by life insurance, the largely untapped industry offered many opportunities. 

PAMB now has some 6,000 agents, of whom over 10% are in Sarawak. More than 50% of its new agents are either degree or diploma holders. 

According to Ng, PAMB's sister company, Prudential Unit Trusts Bhd –set up two years ago –recorded sales of more than RM400mil last year. 

“With Prudential Unit Trusts, we can provide our agents with a wider range of products.  

“Eventually, we want to provide them with the full range of products – from protection to investment schemes,'' he added. 

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