The newly approved merger between Hollard Insurance and Regent Botswana Group presents the opportunity to offer a benefit beyond just the insurance product according, to Frans Prinsloo, the regional head for the newly integrated entities.
Prinsloo sat across from Jane Tselayakgosi, Managing Director of Hollard Botswana in an exclusive interview with Sunday Standard, explaining what they expect to unfold from the transaction. The acquisition of Regent Botswana Group by the South African company creates a new hegemony in the local short-term insurance space where Botswana Insurance Company (BIC) previously dominated.
Botswana Insurance Holdings Limited (BIHL) currently sits at number one. Prinsloo said Hollard Insurance operates in 17 countries across four continents. The merged entities will assume the name Hollard Botswana.
The focus of the merged entities will be on the untapped market deemed to be the lower segment of the market, highlighted Tselayakgosi.
Prinsloo acknowledged the competitiveness of the local insurance industry but argued that opportunities exist to change the landscape particularly in the way the products are distributed.
He said that the current industry leaders possess the upper hand because of financial strength which he added was necessary if a company was to offer good quality life products.
He posited that if competitors, such as themselves, built up such a strong capital capability plus a long term view the present hegemony could be challenged indicating that the merger created such strength.
Tselayakgosi cited that the gap that existed between the number one and two in the market is a wide stretch. In summing up what the innovation will entail, Prinsloo said consumers would find it “much easier to transact.”
This, he said, would be seen from the model they would introduce of building relationships with communities they serviced.
In a previous interview with Regina Sikalesele-Vaka, founder and CEO of Bona Life, a similar concept of a community focused approach was mentioned.
Sikalesele-Vaka explained from the perspective of Bona Life that the approach would involve identifying what works within different groupings such as burial societies and churches and tapping into their infrastructure so as to provide them with products specific to their needs.