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Jubilee insurance targets 15 new markets

NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 20 – Jubilee Holdings Company is eyeing rapid expansion of its insurance business in Africa, targeting to move into 15 new markets.

The company, which is listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange, is looking to move into the West, Central and Southern Africa regions within the next five years.

Jubilee Insurance Kenya Chief Executive Patrick Tumbo said on Thursday, the move forms part of the company\’s strategy to become a Pan-African insurer.

"In Northern Africa we want to go to Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. In the west coast, we are eying Ivory Coast, Mali, Burkina Faso and in the East coast, we are remaining with Malawi and Zambia. We even want to go into Zimbabwe," he said.

Jubilee Holdings is part of the Aga Khan Development Group, which has a 37 percent stake. Regionally, Jubilee Holdings is listed at Uganda Securities Exchange.

He was speaking during the signing of a partnership agreement with Paynet Kenya that will allow Jubilee customers to pay their insurance premiums through PesaPoint ATMs countrywide.

Mr Tumbo said the partnership was aimed at easing premium payments for life insurance policyholders who form a bulk of the company\’s clients.

He said Jubilee plans to leverage on technology as it seeks to boost its current 10 percent market share.

"We plan to increase insurance penetration which is at 2.83 percent which is still too low by making it more accessible to people," he said.

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PesaPoint currently has 46 ATMs across the country and has partnered with 29 financial institution as well as M-PESA and Airtel Money offering policyholders an array of options through which to pay their premiums.

Mr Tumbo said along with the strategic partnership the company had also invested $400,000 (Sh32.4 million) on a new web system that would streamline its revenue collection with benefits such as auto-payment updating, lower reconciliation costs and reduced transaction costs.

"The system will further reduce incidences of fraud and increase convenience for customers, enhancing Jubilee\’s competitive edge in the market," he said.

Paynet Chief Executive Officer Bernard Mathewman said the company was gearing for a massive expansion program for its ATM network.

"This is the year for PesaPoint where we are really going to be spreading. In the next six months, you will see profound difference in where we are available. Forty six (ATMs) sounds good but we are nowhere near where we want to be," Mr Mathewman said.

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