SUN LIFE AIMS TO SHINE BRIGHT IN ASIA

Insurance - - COMPANY CORNER -

Source: The Sun Daily, 11 Septem­ber 2013 The Cana­dian life in­surer, Sun Life Fi­nan­cial Inc has newly ac­quired the taka­ful op­er­a­tion in Malaysia. Ac­cord­ing to the com­pany, it is an im­por­tant com­po­nent and a strate­gic step to­wards its grow plans in Asia. Sun Life made its de­but on the Malaysian mar­ket op­er­at­ing a con­ven­tional life in­surance busi­ness un­der the name Sun Life Malaysia As­sur­ance Bhd and a taka­ful busi­ness via Sun Life Malaysia Taka­ful Bhd. Sun Life Fi­nan­cial Asia Pres­i­dent Kevin Strain said that Malaysia and its first taka­ful unit in In­done­sia can both play a big­ger role in de­vel­op­ing and ex­pand­ing its taka­ful busi­ness be­yond their mar­kets there by form­ing an in­surer taka­ful hub to­gether. Sun Life Malaysia Taka­ful, which of­fers fam­ily taka­ful, or Is­lamic life in­surance, is hope­ful to repli­cate the suc­cess of its In­done­sian unit. As the unit in In­done­sia has a rapid growth of 25 per cent in just two years. Malaysia's fam­ily taka­ful sec­tor, which reg­is­tered to­tal pre­mi­ums of RM4.5 bil­lion in 2012, is pro­jected to record a 20 per cent growth in pre­mi­ums over the next two to three years, out­per­form­ing the growth in the con­ven­tional sec­tor. Mar­ket pen­e­tra­tion for the fam­ily taka­ful seg­ment in Malaysia is still low at 11 per cent, com­pared with con­ven­tional life in­surance, which is 55 per cent. Sun Life has been fo­cus­ing on the emerg­ing economies of Asia, which is ex­pected to pro­vide higher re­turn and growth com­pared to the North Amer­i­can mar­kets. Cur­rently, the com­pany is in seven mar­kets in Asia – namely, Hong Kong, In­dia, China, the Philip­pines, Malaysia, Viet­nam and In­done­sia. With a foot­print in four South­east Asian coun­tries, Sun Life is op­ti­mistic on its prospects in the fast-grow­ing mar­ket that has a com­bined gross do­mes­tic prod­uct of more than US$1 tril­lion (RM3.28 tril­lion). Asean na­tions are ex­pected to ex­pand 5.6 per cent in 2013. Sun Life Malaysia's am­bi­tion is to in­crease its mar­ket share, in terms of life in­surance sales rev­enue, from 1.9 per cent to 2.7 per cent by 2015. It plans to de­velop a mul­ti­ple dis­tri­bu­tion chan­nel strat­egy to boost its rank­ing to eighth by 2015 from 12th cur­rently. Strain did not rule out for Sun Life set­ting up an as­set man­age­ment com­pany in Malaysia in fu­ture. The com­pany has as­set man­age­ment com­pa­nies in most of the mar­kets they op­er­ate in as they see in­surance and as­set man­age­ment handin-hand.

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