Barclays Life Botswana Managing Director, Motshabi Mokone, says as Botswana prepares to celebrate 50 years of independence, the insurance arm ofher bank is also happy to celebrate 5 years of success. She said this at a breakfast meeting which was held in Gaborone on Tuesday.
The celebrations could not have come at a better time as the insurance arm is also celebrating being ranked third in the market. “Companies spend a lot of years learning the ways of the market before they make it anywhere near third place, so for us this is an incredible achievement,” she said.Motshabi said Barclays Bank as a whole has over the years managed to maintain its reputation as a very strong cash generative Pan-African bank.
For his part Product Development Manager at Barclays Life,RatanangTsayang, said 5 years is worth celebrating as most businesses fail in the volatile market of insurance. He said he is inspired by the Non-Bank Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority’s (NBIFIRA) recent decision to hike up capital requirements from P2 million to P10 million. “As regulations begin to improve they safeguard the industry such that only serious players remain in the insurance trading space,” he said.
Tsayang expressed concern over the current 20 percent unemployment rate in the country saying it might cause them to lose customers. “More job cuts mean we are going to lose customers because their disposable income will automatically come to a halt. Our opinion is however that when the economy is down people need insurance even more,” said Tsayang. He said it is sad that penetration rate of insurance in the population is only 2.3 percent. “That can also come as an opportunity for us as it means we have our work cut out for us,” he added.
Meanwhile Chief Executive Officer for Wealth, Investment Management and Insurance at Barclays Africa NomkhitaNqweni says the success of Barclays Life is owed mostly to the customers that have entrusted the bank with the welfare of their families. “This is a great story to tell and an amazing testament to share. I hope in the coming months we will have grown even more through partnerships with customers and the continued harnessing of our strength as a financial institution,” she said. Nqweniexpressed gratitude that Africans have bought thoroughly into the idea that banking does not just stop at the balance sheet which enables them to build shared growth with customers. “The day is really about how that tapestry forms the basis of financial services that eventually add to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product,” she said.
She also said Barclays Life has enabled them to reach even more customers and “ultimately our goal is to become a one stop shop for all their banking needs”.
Nqweni expressed confidence that customers will continue enjoying products such as their various Group Life Insurance Covers, Education Plans, Funeral Covers, Credit Life Insurance Covers and many more found in their catalogue. “Most of all being part of an African Bank in Africa run by Africans is very important and it is indeed a privilege,” she said.