Sockholm, 17 April 2014: Milvik (Bima), the leading provider of mobile-delivered insurance in emerging markets, has been awarded a microinsurance license by the Ministry of Economic and Finance in the Kingdom of Cambodia. The license allows Bima to offer low-cost life, accident, health and other insurance products to the underserved segment in Cambodia.
This is the first time Bima has obtained an insurance license to underwrite policies in a market and thereby propels Bima into the local insurance business. Bima global CEO, Gustaf Agartson says, “This is the start of a new and very exciting chapter for Bima; one where we can address the consumer needs directly and run a number of different products and business models, targeted at mass market consumer groups”.
Cambodia, with a population of about 15 million, has witnessed rapid economic progress in the last decade. The insurance sector itself has experienced double-digit growth in the last two years – the first three quarters of 2013 recorded a 20% growth in premiums over the same period in the previous year. Bima hopes to address this strong market potential, with insurance penetration still relatively low and confined to only the top of the economic pyramid.
Amritha Mani, CEO of Milvik Cambodia, says “With the award of the license, Bima is now one of only two microinsurance companies in Cambodia. We are very excited about rolling out new and innovative insurance products for the mass market in the coming months.”
The World Bank recently reported that while Cambodia is one of the best performers in poverty reduction worldwide, the “near-poor”, those who live on less than $2.30 per day per person, remain vulnerable to “the slightest income shock.” A loss of 30 cents per day could risk forcing three million Cambodians to return to poverty. With this new microinsurance license, Bima hopes to provide a safety net to the near-poor, and address the needs of the mass market segment in the country.