In recent years, the market share of insurance tied agency was on the downtrend. Two rising sales channels are independent financial advisers and Bancassurance. Bancassurance is probably growing at the fastest pace.
Bancassurance is the partnership between a bank and an insurance company whereby the insurance company uses the bank sales channel in order to sell insurance products, so that the insurance company reach its products to the bank’s client base.
Bancassurance is very lucrative for the commercial banks. After all, it is the model that banks focus on selling and leave the servicing to the insurance companies themselves. The insurers are even willing to pay a hefty upfront fee to the bank first.
For example, AIA last year struck a 15-year exclusive deal with Citibank, it was reported that AIA paid an US$800 million ($1.02 billion) upfront payment.
Prudential also struck an agreement this year with Standard Chartered Bank, agreeing to pay US$1.25 billion in fees, to extend its current agreement for 15 years.
The latest move was reported by Reuters that “DBS Group Holdings has hired Morgan Stanley to find a partner to sell life insurance products in Asia under a new deal, after its pact with Aviva ends in 2015”.
With all these mega deals and fees paid, you are almost certain to feel the push factor from the banks to entice you to buy insurance products from them.
Oh, did I mention that AXA announced in July that they have entered into an exclusive PostAssurance partnership with SingPost to sell life insurance products starting in January 2015?
So the question is, will you buy insurance products from the banks, or post office?