All the 12 players in the domestic general insurance industry
are competing each other to grab a sizeable chunk of corporate
policies (mainly fire, burglary and personal insurance
policies) that are coming up for renewal on 1 April 2003.
Nearly 65 per cent of corporate insurance policies generally
fall due on that date.
the four government-owned non-life insurers are resorting
to fire-fighting measures, since the private sector has
started making serious inroads into their domain. Insurance
Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) figures suggest
that private players as a whole have booked around Rs
350-crore fire insurance premium during April 2002-January
the pack is ICICI Lombard General Insurance, which is
tapping the major accounts held by the government insurers.
The company has booked Rs 105-crore premium under its
fire insurance portfolio out of a total premium income
of Rs 174 crore for the 10-month period this fiscal.
company is also the first non-life insurer to sign its
reinsurance agreements for the next fiscal. According
to K Bharathan, regional head (south), the company has
signed up with Munich Re for its reinsurance needs.
ICICI Lombard are Iffco Tokio (Rs 87 crore), Reliance
(Rs 50 crore), Bajaj Allianz (Rs 39 crore) Royal Sundaram
(Rs 35 crore), Tata AIG (Rs 28 crore) and Cholamandalam
General Insurance (Rs 3.99 crore). The private sector
as a whole has booked around Rs 350 crore as fire insurance
General Insurance and HDFC Chubb General Insurance started
their operations only in October 2002. Says Satish Deshpande,
head claims-reinsurance, Cholamandalam: We are also
gearing up for corporate business and most of our reinsurance
is with the national reinsurer, General Insurance Corporation
of India (GIC).
Chubb is, however, playing a different tune in the market
with its focus on specialised products like directors
an officers liability policy, overseas travel, group
personal accident insurance, and errors and omissions
are in the learning curve. We will, in due course, tap
the fire insurance business but the initial focus is speciality
products and risk management solutions, says Shrirang
V Samant, chief executive officer, HDFC Chubb.
the meantime, the entire non-life insurance industry has
clocked a total premium income of Rs 11,558 crore up to
January 2003 this fiscal. While the four government-owned
non-life insurers account for 90.54 per cent, the balance
is shared by eight new private players, says IRDA.
the motor insurance business Bajaj Allianz leads the private
sector, earning Rs 136-crore premium for the period under
review. It is followed by Royal Sundaram (Rs 64 crore),
Tata AIG (Rs 62 crore), Iffco Tokio (Rs 19 crore), ICICI
Lombard (Rs 1.32 crore), Reliance (Rs 5.85 crore), Cholamandalam
(Rs 90 lakh) and HDFC Chubb (Rs 3.92 crore).
premium booked by the private sector under other major
business segments are engineering (Rs 105 crore), health
(Rs 68 crore) and marine (Rs 64 crore).