Staying savvy and sustainable
Creating a sustainable business model has been an essential focus for MUA. Having benefited from Telesure’s highly advanced technological systems, economies of scale relating to its procurement process and its innovative underwriting techniques; MUA has been able to ensure that it maintains a book of business that is profitable. “Brokers will continue to do business with underwriters who are innovative and stay up to date with current trends in the digital space. We’ve had our app for the past year and a half, and it’s been doing really well for us. We are constantly looking to innovate. Developing tools and solutions from a technological perspective is the only way forward,” Fourie explains. For MUA, the focus is not solely around the concept of simply developing an app, but more on creating greater accessibility and efficiencies for the policy and claims administration. “The more you can automate and innovate around technology, the easier it becomes and the more business we’re able to write,” she says. In reducing their loss ratio, MUA is in a better position to focus on improving its value proposition and service to brokers and clients. One of the main driving factors in ensuring this sustainability is the ability to manage the cost of repairs and procurement. This is done by and large through the bulk buying power of the risk carrier. They’ve been able to mitigate the cost for repairs, especially with the continual price increases for parts as a result of inflation and exchange rates. The partnership with Telesure has also allowed MUA to focus on the development of innovative products that it hopes to launch to market in the near future. MUA believes that, in developing these products, they will be able to not only provide a better value proposition to their existing client base, but also potentially explore previously untapped market segments.
Plans in the pipeline
According to Fourie, 2015 is all about improving MUA’s underwriting profitability. “We’re focused on both consolidation, as well as to make sure that we have the best business on our books for insurers and reinsurers. We’re also focused on innovation and product development,” she says. She continues, “Writing a healthy book of business is always important to us. Next year is about profitable growth. We’ll continue to focus on the high net worth clients more than anything.” Fourie says it’s still business as usual at MUA. Throughout the partnership, MUA has retained its independence and says it will continue to offer the same standard of service levels it has provided over the past 26 years. “Brokers have been dealing with us since 1989. Not much has changed, except for a new risk carrier that is exceptionally accommodating, supportive and respectful of our business strategy and our partnerships. We could not be happier with our new risk carrier,” Fourie comments. What can brokers and policyholders look forward to in 2015? “We plan on launching a new product at the beginning of the year [February 2015] that’s largely aimed at the young professional. This will be aimed more at the ‘ financially successful’ younger professional. There is definitely potential in that space and we are looking to grab the opportunity with both hands.” “Our relationships with our brokers, some who have been with MUA since the beginning, have proved invaluable and contributed to the success of the brand in the marketplace. The change in risk carriers has been no exception to this, and they’ve been fully supportive throughout the entire process.”