*The marketplace called “insuranceMarket” is available at insurancemarket.ng
Nigerian Minister of Communication, Barr Adebayo Shittu has launched Nigeria’s first ever Insurance marketplace called “insuranceMarket” and it is available at insurancemarket.ng. The digital platform is an initiative of Pinet Informatics.
Speaking Thursday during the unveiling at e-Insurance Conference in Lagos, Shittu said Federal Government believes that catalytic and transformational nature of ICT , if properly harness , can position Insurance sector to be a major contributor to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and next to oil by way of increased earnings.
With the launch, IT NEWS NIGERIA gathered, buying insurance cover in Nigeria is now simplified involving just three steps including: go to insurancemarket.ng, select cover, and pay online.
According to the minister, “in other climes, e-insurance has already been fully adopted and various insurance products can be obtained through online Insurance portals, programmed to tailored unique insurance packages to distinctive individual requirements. It can be Auto and car Insurance, health, home and life insurance.”
Speaking further, he said “I am particularly delighted about the development of InsuranceMarket by Pinet Informatics … an online marketplace where insurance companies can sell their packages .we applaud the modest yet innovative effort and call on other ICT companies to develop solutions that will help drive the adoption of Insurance across the country, while providing wealth creation opportunities to our teeming unemployed you.”
According to him, “as Government we will continue to introduce and drive policies that will propel Nigeria to attain the status of knowledge-based nation.”
Shittu thanked Pinet Informatics for Nigeria’s ever first e-insurance conference and for gathering insurance industry practitioners and players in ICT to brainstorm, knowledge sharing and networking for the purpose improving insurance sector.
On his part, Managing Director (MD) of Pinet Informatics , Mr. Lanre Ajayi said his company is convinced that with right application of ICT tools in insurance industry the industry can be completely turned around, making it a major contributor to national economy.
“Policy consistency is what makes telecoms successful in Nigeria. Leadership change does not change policy in Regulatory oversight,” Ajayi said, adding that such approach could be adopted in insurance sector.
IT NEWS NIGERIA also learned that there are less than 1.5 million insurance policy holders in Nigeria out of a population of 170 million, which translates to 0.9 per cent insurance penetration.” When compared to 23 per cent bank accounts penetration, 105 per cent of telephone penetration and 55 per cent of Internet penetration, then, there is a lot of room for improvement in the insurance industry and this could be achieved by deploying the right technology.
In his presentation, MD, Rack Centre, Mr. Tunde Coker said during a key note address that time is now for Nigeria to reinvent its Insurance industry because the nation is not doing well compared to some other African countries like Kenya.
“As a country we owe it to the nation to have a thriving Insurance. ICT has been used to enhance various platforms. It is possible to replicate same in the insurance sector,” he said.
Also speaking, Chairman, Nigeria Insurance Association, Mr. Eddie Efekoha, who chair the panel discussion on ‘Driving Insurance underwriting with ICT,’ said technology has continued to change business approach in other sectors and that the time is now for practitioners to use ICT to drive insurance otherwise others will do it for them. “ICT is the greatest disruptor of any business and Insurance cannot be left out,” he said.
Stakeholders at the event agree that it is importance to improve image of insurance by paying claims as when due. This is because, there is image deficits and 96%of Nigerians say they don’t trust insurance companies.
They also noted that the main drivers of insurance are now customers’ expectations and digital disruptors. This makes it increasingly mandatory for insurance to reinvent itself with ICT.
ICT experts, insurance experts, academia, and consumers of insurance products and services were gathered to discuss how to use technology to deepen insurance penetration and replicate the success of ICT in banking in insurance.
Also present at the e-Insurance event are President, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN), Lady Insioma Chukwuma,President, Association of telecoms Companies of Nigeria, Mr Olusola Teniola, MD, VDT Communication, Mr. Biodun Omoniyi and MD, Internet exchange Point of Nigeria, Mohammed Rudman plus a host of other dignitaries.
The event was sponsored by RackCentre, Mainone Cable Company, VDT Communication, and Prestige Assurance PLC..