Hollard Namibia gets personal

Date posted: 18 Nov 2013

Hollard Namibia has embraced a new methodology for its personal lines offering, making it more comprehensive and easier to understand. The company has also introduced a scientific rating model and is in the process of developing a new computer system to support the product line-up.

Geon Ellis, personal lines manager, explains that Hollard's new approach to its personal lines book represents a strategic shift for the company.

"For the past 10 years Hollard Namibia has run a personal lines book in support of its commercial insurance product offering," he says. "Our personal lines products were always available, but we tended to give more focus to commercial products."

Over the years, the personal lines book gradually grew, until it accounted for about a third of Hollard Namibia's gross written premium.

"A couple of years ago we took a long, hard look at the PL book and asked ourselves some really tough questions around the role that it played in our business model," says Geon. "It had become an important contributor to our bottom line and we realised that with a new approach to the offering we could add a lot of value for our brokers, our policyholders and for our own business."

What's new?

A task team was assembled to assess and redesign the products' look-and-feel, as well as the rating methodology used. Now, after an 18-month process, Hollard's entire personal lines offering has been given a complete facelift:

  • Personal lines cover now now includes:
    • Household contents
    • Mechanical and electrical breakdown
    • All risks
    • Buildings
    • Personal computers
    • Motor
    • Personal liability
    • Personal accident
    • Pleasure-craft
    • Extended liability
  • The policy wordings have been rewritten using plain, customer-focused language, ensuring there is no insurance jargon
  • A new computer system, Centauri, is being developed to assist with administration, claims, underwriting, etc.
  • A scientific rating model has been incorporated to help manage loss ratios more closely and attract clients where we were previously not achieving sufficient market penetration.

"This is great news for us as well as for our brokers, who can now punt a comprehensive personal lines product with extensive covers at the correct rate," says Geon. "Members of the public are getting more and more familiar with the principles of insurance and often come back to brokers with technical questions about covers. To a large extent, the simplified policy wordings are reducing the number of policyholder queries to brokers."

Annelize de Jong, SADC business integration manager at Hollard International, worked with the short-term team in Namibia to get the new personal lines products launched.

"It is still early days to comment on the impact on the loss ratio, but we have faith that as clients and brokers get used to the new policy wording style and rating methodology, the product will become popular and results will speak for themselves," she says. "Our experience in Namibia will also guide us into developing appropriate personal lines products for our other SADC licenses."

Geon says Hollard has always in followed a broker-based marketing model in Namibia, and that will remain the case for the future.

"We will continue to offer both commercial and personal lines products through our broker network and are always happy to discuss new relationships with brokers who aren't yet on our books."

Geon Ellis, Hollard's personal lines manager,says the new approach will add value for brokers, policyholders and Hollard itself.

Annelize de Jong, SADC business integration manager at Hollard International, believes our personal lines products will be popular additions to our line-up.

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