APAC insurance giants report positive top-line performance, indicating robust premium growth in 2020, reveals GlobalData

The COVID-19 pandemic-induced rise in demand for life and health insurance products helped the top 20 Asia-Pacific (APAC) public insurance companies report aggregated premium of US$821.4bn, a year-over-year (y-o-y) growth of around 2.5% in their top-line performance in 2020, finds GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

An analysis of GlobalData’s Company Profiles Database reveals that seven players reported more than 5% rise in premiums earned. In addition, the top companies maintained financial robustness through flexible hedging of assets under management.

The most notable performers in the region were Japan-based insurer Dai-ichi Life, China-based New China Life Insurance and China Reinsurance; and Taiwan-based Cathay Financial.

Dai-ichi Life outperformed the top players, with its revenue growth surpassing 20%, as the weaker Yen allowed the company’s returns from its investments soar significantly over the previous year.

China Reinsurance reported 19.2% increase in y-o-y revenue owing to swift growth in savings- and protection-type life, domestic P&C reinsurance, and health reinsurance business, which led to 16.2% growth in premium income; and obtaining surplus investment returns by surpassing the market benchmarks.

New China Life reported more than 15% rise in revenue due to 13.7% and 16.8% growth in premiums from health insurance and traditional insurance products, respectively.

Murthy Grandhi, Company Profiles Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Technology developments is one more area that has gained more importance. Due to the COVID-19 social distancing norms and regulatory push, many insurers have accelerated the adoption of digital platforms.”

In 2020, Ping An Insurance introduced ‘One-click Claims Services’, which has now been availed by more than 2.34 million customers. It also has been leveraging AI robots to offer digital, paperless, automatic smart insurance policy and claims services. Its subsidiary, Ping An Property & Casualty processed more than 6.9 million digital self-service family auto insurance claims.

The remaining players reported moderate revenue growth with China Taiping, T&D Holdings, China Life Insurance, Hanwha Life, and China Pacific Insurance reporting a y-o-y growth between of 10-15%; while Fubon Financial, MS&AD Insurance, Samsung Life, The People’s Insurance, AIA, and Sompo reporting marginal growth rates between 5-10%.

However, Japan Post Insurance underperformed with 2.8% decline in revenue on the back of 4.4% drop in annualized premiums from individual insurance and medical care insurance due to non-participation from proactive sales proposals.

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