The Singapore FinTech Association (SFA) and the Life Insurance Association Singapore (LIA Singapore) yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the sidelines of the Singapore FinTech Festival 2020. The MOU reaffirms the commitment of both associations to work for the progress of the InsurTech and FinTech industry in Singapore.
Under the MoU, both parties will collaborate on the development of the life insurance and InsurTech talent pool and expertise through mentorship, reverse mentorship programmes and deep dive workshops. The associations will also collaborate on market research and publications focussed on life insurance and InsurTech.
Mr Chia Hock Lai, president of SFA, commented, “This partnership will bring tremendous value to the InsurTech community to shape the growth of the InsurTech and FinTech landscape in coming years. We are dedicated to building a thriving ecosystem for InsurTechs and we are excited to be at the forefront of this movement to enhance the industry at large.”
Mr Khor Hock Seng, president of LIA Singapore, said that the digital transformation initiatives life insurers launched in earlier years have enabled the sector to service and stay connected with customers when circuit-breaker measures took effect in April 2020. Amid the pandemic, life insurers accelerated their digitalisation efforts to future-proof their businesses and harnessed innovation to drive product innovation and optimise the end-to-end customer experience.
He added, “Managing rising medical costs is the long-term priority of the life insurance industry in Singapore. By analysing our knowledge of customers’ health and fitness data with their medical records, life insurers can further partner Singaporeans to effect better health outcomes and manage medical costs for more sustainable healthcare expenditure. This is one potential example of collaboration with the Singapore FinTech Association that furthers our mission to build a smart life insurance sector that befits our Smart Nation vision.”
Launch of white paper
At the MOU signing ceremony, SFA also launched the white paper entitled “Insurance Redefined – A Roadmap for Insurers and InsurTechs”. The document, jointly developed by global management consulting firm Oliver Wyman and SFA, focuses on emerging trends in insurance and paints a bold vision of what the future of insurance would look like over the next 10 years and the implications for InsurTechs.
Key insights from the white paper are:
Despite its social and economic importance, the insurance industry has grown more slowly than the global economy over the last decade and needs to transform itself to stay relevant. The report explores how some of the key megatrends fundamentally affect the insurance industry and how incumbents and InsurTechs are responding.
Approximately 80% of the C-suite executives surveyed for the report indicated that they are investing in developing partnerships and around 60% are investing in digital & technology infrastructure. While the specific opportunities may vary by line of business and function, a few key themes that cut across the opportunities and lines of business include customer experience & centricity, product innovation, partnerships, and digital and technology capabilities.
Asia is currently the global hotbed for innovation. Despite the challenges, the insurance industry presents many opportunities for Asian insurers and InsurTechs to capitalise on the key themes.
Commenting on the launch of the white paper, Mr Tomasz Kurczyk, chairman of SFA’s InsurTech Sub-Committee, commented, “2020 demonstrated how vital it was for the insurance industry to quickly adopt technology and deliver innovative products and services, to ensure customers are protected and have access to critical services. The global pandemic brought insurers and InsurTechs together and created new opportunities for collaboration, under the common goal of assisting customers in times of need.
“The InsurTech industry, especially in Asia, is poised to move on to the next phase of accelerated growth—fuelled by new partnership opportunities, rapid adoption of technology and a new type of services by both consumers and insurers.”
Mr Angat Sandhu, head of Insurance for Asia Pacific, Oliver Wyman, an international management consulting firm, said, “The strong economic growth potential in Asia, demographic changes, as well as the explosion of data and technology, provide significant opportunities for insurers and InsurTechs to collaborate and better serve customer needs.”