Magazine

Mar 2019

Read the latest edition of AIR and MEIR as an Interactive e-book

Editor's Message

Source: Asia Insurance Review | Mar 2019

It is the ‘age of the client’, no matter where you are on the digital front or in the business cycle. Yet even in March, one knows not who that ‘client’ is. It is a tough call between the distribution brigade that brings in the customers - and the entity that is finally registered as the policyholder. Then there are the ‘in-betweeners’ who, although not clients, still keep an eye on you: The regulator or the ratings agencies.
 
This March, with our 7th Brokers Summit in Jakarta focusing on the seven virtues of a successful broker, we dig deep into their role in the insurance chain. The verdict is that, despite fears of disintermediation, brokers are here to stay as an invaluable force in getting insurance bought. We even go the extra mile to paint you the glossy picture of the winning insurance broker in 2025 be you a disruptor, Phoenix or just an intermediary focused on building long-term ties with clients. 
 
With three big events this month, this bumper issue offers many strategic tips for the chief executives in the market at our flagship CEO Summit. CEOs need to internalise the power of tech and InsurTech to ensure that they transform their organisation to at least survive. We bring you a host of stories on the varying degrees of success insurers have on social media. Some are already harnessing media information through AI to customise products for those who don’t know what they need. 
 
With our third event in March being the Asia Healthcare Conference focusing on where insurers fit in the public drive from healthcare to health, we bring you a sharp focus on telemedicine and telehealth and the opportunities they promise for insurers. Health is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the market everywhere given the rising cost of healthcare and the ageing population in Asia. But the search for the best long-term solutions is still going on. 
 
Our country profile is on Australia, a leading market in Asia, where insurance is very much always in the news either because it is going for a makeover or because the public thinks it is the panacea for all their ills. The Royal Commission report takes centre stage with its attack on many sectors of the industry. But Australia has much to offer the insurance world with its sophistication, culture, risk models and software leads - and just being globally connected.
Exactly a year after our last Myanmar summit, this March we herald the end of the wait to enter the 55m Myanmar market where the government has approved the roadmap for liberalisation.
 
Much is happening in the region with regulators being very active across most markets. Then there is also the resurgence of M&A – and here the number of deals made in Asia Pacific hit the highest in 2018. It is a sign of the times and a sign of hope and despair too, said a merger enthusiast. There are also great horns blaring on the extent of cyber exposures and how most SMEs are still blissfully ignorant of the threats or foolishly self-insuring to save a few dollars more.
 
With March, it is time to tweak the budget to ensure you hit the mark this time with the right resolve and resources, no matter how challenging the external environment gets.
 
Sivam Subramaniam
Editor-in-chief 
Asia Insurance Review
 
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