Blog articles

Monday, 18 September 2017

When I was invited to speak at the ICMIF Biennial Conference, and heard the theme was “redesigning insurance”, my immediate thought was that this may actually be a never-ending task.

It seems that with digital disruption in full swing, all industries are faced with the problem of changing the way they do business in real time, while keeping the original business running and servicing existing customers.

One of the best examples of this is the decision by the UK to leave the EU or “Brexit” as it has become known globally. Think about your own business. If you were told that you had to completely divest one of your largest...

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

There’s no doubt that the insurance industry is living through interesting times. We are facing unprecedented change from a wide range of forces including: climate change; new risks, such as cyber security and the sharing economy; and new technology, including artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles and the internet of things (IoT). We are also seeing social forces play an important role, and breakdowns in international cooperation, mass migration and income inequality are driving many of us to re-examine our role in promoting cooperation and mutual support. The upcoming ICMIF Biennial Conference will address many of these topics and...

Thursday, 04 May 2017

The digital world has brought disruption in a similar way to the impact of the invention of writing or the printing press. And we are only beginning to fully gauge this impact.

For those involved in developing the new digital economy, this high speed digitisation is an undeniable sign of progress. In the health sector, the consolidation of personal data on individuals is becoming a deciding factor for individual wellbeing. There is tremendous hope that healthcare will become mainly preventive, leading to more precise diagnostics and more effective early treatment that will bring about longer and healthier lives.

Digital...

Thursday, 27 April 2017

It is a long time since a regulatory “level playing field” has been an aspiration for mutual/cooperative insurance companies. In certain jurisdictions, it is not entirely uncommon for insurance regulators or legislators to develop policies that presume all insurers have the same ownership and governance structures. But mutuals/cooperatives do not have the same ownership structures, nor are they governed the same way: they are owned by their customers (or customer-owned groups), who do not have the same rights as shareholders, but do participate in the firm’s governance, and are referred to as members.

Instead, the mutual sector is...

Thursday, 09 March 2017

Case study of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD)

The desire to influence global policy will be high on the wish list of almost every CEO in the insurance sector – certainly all of those I meet within the mutual and cooperative insurance sector. But rarely have I seen an idea move from the drawing board to action in as quick a time as it has taken for the creation of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) to the publication of the report on its recommendations for helping businesses disclose climate-related financial risks and opportunities within the context of their existing...

Thursday, 09 March 2017

Unlike a listed company, which is owned by shareholders, a mutual company is made up of a community of members. This community of members guides the direction and governance of the entity, rather than shareholder interests. While this is the first time I have worked at a mutual organisation, I have not only been truly inspired by the leadership team and the staff at PPS, but also by our members and the business model itself.

In a mutual company, the members are essentially the 'shareholders' of the company. The members fundamentally own the company as they share in all the company's profits. The concept of mutuality is exactly that...

Thursday, 09 February 2017

It’s that time of year again, when so many of us make New Year’s resolutions that cover both personal and business areas of our lives where we vow to make changes for the better. This year, I would like to suggestion a resolution for all of us in the mutual and cooperative insurance sector to ensure we engage with millennials in the best possible way we can. To ensure that the millennial talent we already have working for our organizations really feel engaged and valued by their organization, even by the sector as a whole, and to give them an all-important sense of purpose. Also, we must resolve to do all that we can to make our...

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Just as our daily lives depend on electric grids or telecommunications, so too economic growth, job creation and prosperity rely upon a strong financial system.

Insurance is an important and growing part of the financial sector and it exists in virtually all developed and most developing countries. A resilient and well-regulated insurance industry contributes significantly to economic growth and efficient resource allocation through the transfer of risk and mobilization of financial assets.

As long ago as 2003, the IMF noted that insurance is a tool for enhancing the efficiency of financial systems through the reduction of...

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

A PwC survey of Generation Y raised an interesting question: are there any industries in which you would not wish to work solely because of their image? Coming out as the top industry that Gen Y do not wish to work for was the oil and gas industry. Second, was defence. Insurance was the third. Our industry has such a bad reputation among this generation, that only an industry that is considered to be killing the planet and one that is concerned with killing each other were viewed as worse to work in.

Our industry’s image among this generation, which will make up 50% of the global workforce by 2020, is something that should be...

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

The cooperative and mutual insurance sector has long been associated with having a strong heritage but its continued success and growth also point to an outstanding capability to respond to changing market dynamics and emerging consumer needs. This capability will underpin our sector’s future development as it contends with new demographic trends, ongoing financial market instability, climate change, shifting consumer behaviours and digital disruption. It’s about rethinking the way we serve and create value for our members; it’s about reinventing ourselves through innovation and shaping external perceptions of our sector. It is about...

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