Asia

Insurtech Igloo, Philinsure partnership to protect Filipinos amid COVID-19 pandemic

Raunak Mehta

Raunak Mehta

Headquartered in Singapore, insurtech Igloo has partnered with Philpacific Insurance Brokers Inc., an insurance broker based in the Philippines and also known as Philinsure. Officially announced on February 9, 2021, the partnership kicked off with the digitization of Philinsure’s insurance products offering accessible and affordable insurance to Filipinos in their home country to support their need for security and protection amid the new coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

As the partnership evolves, Igloo and Philinsure will be providing more insurance products to better protect the families in the Philippines. Igloo chief commercial officer Raunak Mehta stated, “This pandemic brought about an urgent need for traditional industries to tap technology, and this is especially evident in the insurance sector in the Philippines.”

“This partnership with Philinsure aims to support a very important sector in the Philippines, such as small business owners whose work have a very real and immediate impact on their communities,” Mehta continued. “We want to be able to provide them with affordable and relevant protection to give them the confidence to focus on their business and their livelihood.”

 

Founded by Wei Zhu in June 2016 to provide affordable insurance for everyone, Igloo is a full-stack insurtech firm that employs big data, dynamic risk assessment and expedited claims management to provide partners with widened distribution networks and allows consumers access to customized insurance solutions. To date, it has sold over 100 million policies in Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia.

With a digital insurance penetration of less than 1 percent, the availability of insurance protection in the Philippines is largely offline which limits their reach, especially in these days of the pandemic. Igloo sees a lot of potential in driving this digitally to provide highly customized and relevant solutions to the consumers in the most accessible, scalable and affordable manner.

Leveraging its technological capabilities, Igloo is able to deliver operational efficiencies and lower costs for its insurance partners, and provide value-adding products to the customer base of its distribution partners. Philinsure chief executive officer Gordon Alan “Dondi” Joseph said, “We are excited to be working with Igloo as part of our effort to better drive our CSR advocacy to serve Filipino families, wherever they are in the Philippines or in the world.”

“We also see that working with Igloo will help us achieve greater efficiencies in our post-pandemic digitization program,” Joseph continued. “We look forward to working with Igloo to widen our CSR advocacy through its digital platform that is capable of providing a simple, effective means of protecting and therefore empowering the Filipino Family.”

 

According to United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Philippines, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) comprise 99.5 percent of the Philippines’ business establishment, employing approximately 63 percent of the country’s workforce. Partnering with Philinsure is part of Igloo’s larger mission to provide affordable insurance to the masses and the partnership seeks to strengthen the insurtech’s foothold in the country’s market as it expands the variety of verticals it serves from on-demand customer platforms to banks, fintech and logistics firms.

In 2019, Igloo entered the Philippines with its collaboration with Southeast Asia’s largest and fastest-growing hotel management and booking platform RedDoorz and partnered with the UnionBank of the Philippines. The insurtech has also widened its insurance partner base to include Mercantile, Pioneer, PGA-Sompo Insurance Corporation and United Coconut Planters Life Assurance Corporation.

Igloo looks to evolve its product offering by investing in the development of new products to cater and fit the ever-changing market needs. Apart from these existing products, the insurtech aims to work with partners to launch new policies such as home, business, internet security, pet insurance and those focused on single diseases such as dengue and COVID-19.

With these plans in mind, the team looks to hire more people in their Philippine office as it expects the number of policies sold via its platform in the Philippines to grow four times in 2021. The company is also looking for strategic investors for their upcoming funding round, which is expected to close by the first quarter of the year.

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