Life insurance in India

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Jump to: navigation, search This article is an orphan, as few or no other articles link to it. Please introduce links to this page from other articles related to it. (February 2009) Life Insurance is the fastest growing sector in India since 2000 as Government allowed Private players and FDI up to 26%. Life Insurance in India was nationalised by incorporating Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) in 1956. All private life insurance companies at that time were taken over by LIC. In 1993 the Government of Republic of India appointed RN Malhotra Committee to lay down a road map for privatisation of the life insurance sector. While the committee submitted its report in 1994, it took another six years before the enabling legislation was passed in the year 2000, legislation amending the Insurance Act of 1938 and legislating the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act of 2000. The same year that the newly appointed insurance regulator - Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority IRDA -- started issuing licenses to private life insurers.

Contents
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1 List of Life Insurers (as of Sept, 2008) 2 Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy in Insurance Sector 3 Indian life insurance industry overview
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3.1 Commission / intermediation fees

[edit] List of Life Insurers (as of Sept, 2008) Apart from Life Insurance Corporation, the public sector life insurer, there are 20 other private sector life insurers, most of them joint ventures between Indian groups and global insurance giants. Life Insurer in Public Sector 1. Life Insurance Corporation of India Life Insurers in Private Sector

1. Metlife India Life Insurance 2. ICICI Prudential Life Insurance 3. Bajaj Allianz Life 4. Max New York Life Insurance 5. Sahara Life Insurance 6. Tata AIG Life 7. HDFC Standard Life 8. Birla Sunlife 9. SBI Life Insurance [1] 10. Kotak Life Insurance 11. Aviva Life Insurance 12. Reliance Life Insurance Company Limited - Formerly known as AMP Sanmar LIC 13. ING Vysya Life Insurance 14. Shriram Life Insurance 15. Bharti AXA Life Insurance Co Ltd 16. Future Generali Life Insurance Co Ltd 17. IDBI Fortis Life Insurance Co Ltd 18. AEGON Religare Life Insurance 19. DLF Pramerica Life Insurance 20. CANARA HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce LIFE INSURANCE [edit] Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy in Insurance Sector As per the current (Mar 06) FDI norms, foreign participation in an Indian insurance company is restricted to 26.0% of its equity / ordinary share capital. The Union Budget for fiscal 2005 had recommended that the ceiling on foreign holding be increased to 49.0%. The government approved the much-awaited comprehensive Insurance Bill that seeks to raise foreign direct investment (FDI) cap in private sector to 49 per cent from 26 per cent.

[edit] Indian life insurance industry overview
All life insurance companies in India have to comply with the strict regulations laid out by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA). Therefore there is no risk in going in for private insurance players. In terms of being rated for financial strength like international players, only ICICI Prudential is rated by Fitch India at National Insurer Financial Strength Rating of AAA(Ind) with stable outlook indicating the highest claims paying ability rating. Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the state owned behemoth, remains by far the largest player in the market. Among the private sector players, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance(JV between ICICI Bank and Prudential PLC) is the largest followed by Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company Limited (JV between Bajaj Group and Allianz). The private companies are coming out with better products which are more beneficial to the

customer. Among such products are the ULIPs or the Unit Linked Investment Plans which offer both life cover as well as scope for savings or investment options as the customer desires.Further, these type of plans are subject to a minimum lock-in period of three years to prevent misuse of the significant tax benefits offered to such plans under the Income Tax Act. Hence, comparison of such products with mutual funds would be erroneous. [edit] Commission / intermediation fees

The maximum commission limits as per statutory provisions are:

Agency commission for retail life insurance business:
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7- 50% for 1st year premium if the premium paying term is more than 20 years 7- 10% for 1st year premium if the premium paying term is more than 15 years 7- 10% for 1st year premium if the premium paying term is less than 10 years 7% - yr 2 and 3rd year and 3.5% - thereafter for all premium paying terms.

In case of Mutual fund related - Unit linked policies it varies between 1.5% to6% on the premium paid.
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Agency commission for retail pension policies  7.5% for 1st year premium and 2.5% thereafter

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Maximum broker commission - 30% Referral fees to banks – Max 55% for regular premium and 10% for single premium. However in any case this fee cannot be more than the agency commission as filed under the product. However, the above commission may be further subject to the product wise limits specified by IRDA while approving the product.

Life Insurance Corporation of India
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Life Insurance Corporation of India
Type Founded Headquarters Government-owned corporation September 1, 1956 Headquarters in Mumbai, India (Various other locations in India and abroad) T.S Vijayan, Key people Industry Products Total assets Employees Parent Subsidiaries Website (Chairman)D.K.Mehrotra,Thomas Mathew and A. Dasgupta (Managing Directors) Life insurance Individual Life Insurance,Group Insurance and Pension Plans Rs 8 Trillion ($173 Billion USD) 112,184 NIL LIC Housing Finance Limited, LIC(Nepal)Ltd, LIC(Lanka)Ltd, LIC(International)BSC(C),Behrain, www.licindia.com

The Life Insurance Corporation of India (Hindi: भभभभभभ भभभभ भभभभ भभभभ) (LIC) is the largest life insurance company in India and also the country's largest investor.; it is fully owned by the Government of India. It also funds close to 24.6% of the Indian Government's expenses. It has assets estimated of 8 Trillion Rupees (or about $170 Billion dollars). It was founded in 1956. Headquartered in Mumbai, which is considered the financial capital of India, the Life Insurance Corporation of India currently has 8 zonal Offices and 101 divisional offices located in different parts of India, at least 2048 branches located in different cities and towns of India along with satellite Offices attached to about some 50 Branches, and has a network of around 1.2 million agents for soliciting life insurance business from the public.

Contents
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1 History 2 Nationalization 3 Current status 4 Subsidiaries 5 Technology usage 6 People 7 Objectives of LIC of India 8 External links

[edit] History
The Oriental Life Insurance Company, the first corporate entity in India offering life insurance coverage, was established in Calcutta in 1818 by Bipin Behari Dasgupta and others. Europeans in India were its primary target market, and it charged Indians heftier premiums. The Bombay Mutual Life Assurance Society, formed in 1870, was the first native insurance provider. Other insurance companies established in the preindependence era included
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Bharat Insurance Company (1896) United India (1906) National Indian (1906) National Insurance (1906) Co-operative Assurance (1906) Hindustan Co-operatives (1907) Indian Mercantile General Assurance Swadeshi Life (later Bombay Life)

The first 150 years were marked mostly by turbulent economic conditions. It witnessed, India's First War of Independence, adverse effects of the World War I and World War II on the economy of India, and in between them the period of world wide economic crises triggered by the Great depression. The first half of the 20th century also saw a heightened struggle for India's independence. The aggregate effect of these events led to a high rate of bankruptcies and liquidation of life insurance companies in India. This had adversely affected the faith of the general public in the utility of obtaining life cover. The Life Insurance Act and the Provident Fund Act were passed in 1912, providing the first regulatory mechanisms in the Life Insurance industry. The Indian Insurance Companies Act of 1928 authorized the government to obtain statistical information from companies operating in both life and non-life insurance areas. The subsequent Insurance Act of 1938 brought stricter state control over an industry that had seen several financially unsound ventures fail. A bill was also introduced in the Legislative Assembly in 1944 to nationalize the insurance industry.

[edit] Nationalization
In 1955, parliamentarian Feroze Gandhi raised the matter of insurance fraud by owners of private insurance companies. In the ensuing investigations, one of India's wealthiest businessmen, Ram Kishan Dalmia, owner of the Times of India newspaper, was sent to prison for two years. Eventually, the Parliament of India passed the Life Insurance of India Act on 1956-06-19, and the Life Insurance Corporation of India was created on 1956-09-01, by consolidating the life insurance business of 245 private life insurers and other entities offering life insurance services. Nationalization of the life insurance business in India was a result of the Industrial Policy Resolution of 1956, which had created a policy framework for extending state control over at least seventeen sectors of the economy, including the life insurance. The company began operations with 5 zonal offices, 33 divisional offices and 212 branch offices.

[edit] Current status
Over its existence of around 50 years, Life Insurance Corporation of India, which commanded a monopoly of soliciting and selling life insurance in India, created huge surpluses, and contributed around 7 % of India's GDP in 2006. The Corporation, which started its business with around 300 offices, 5.6 million policies and a corpus of INR 459 million (US$ 92 million as per the 1959 exchange rate of roughly Rs. 5 for a US $ http://data.un.org/Data.aspx?d=CDB&f=srID:6080), has grown to 25000 servicing around 180 million policies and a corpus of over INR 8 trillion (US$ 173 billion). The organization now comprises 2048 branches, 109 divisional offices and 8 zonal offices, and employs over 1,002,149 agents.The corporate Office of LIC is in Mumbai. It

also operates in 12 other countries, primarily to cater to the needs of Non Resident Indians. With the change in the India's economic philosophy from the early 1990s, and the subsequent relaxation of state control over several sectors of the economy, the monopolistic position of the Life Insurance Corporation of India was diluted, and it has had to compete with a number of other corporate entities, Indian as well as transnational Life Insurance brands. However, it still manages to be the largest player in the Indian market, with the lion's share of 55%. The recent Economic Times Brand Equity Survey rated LIC as the No. 1 Service Brand of the Country. In the financial year 2006-07 Life Insurance Corporation of India's number of policy holders are said to have crossed a whopping 200 million (fourth in terms of population of the countries of the world)

[edit] Subsidiaries
LIC owns the following subsidiaries:

Life Insurance Corporation of India International: This is a joint venture offshore company promoted by LIC which commenced operations in July, 1989 with the objectives of offering US$ denominated policies to cater to the insurance needs of NRIs and providing insurance services to holders of LIC policies currently residing in the Gulf. LIC International operates in all GCC countries. LIC Nepal: A joint venture company formed in 2001 with the Vishal Group of Industries, Nepal. LIC Lanka: A joint venture company formed in 2003 with the Bartleet Group of Companies, Sri Lanka. LIC Housing Finance: Incorporated in 19 June 1989, its main objective is to provide long term finance for construction or purchase of houses or apartments. It has a Dubai office. o LICHFL Care Homes: A wholly owned subsidiary of LIC Housing Finance, it builds and operates "Assisted Community Living Centres" for senior citizens.

[edit] Technology usage
The insurance giant opted for internet services for all its subscribers and developed massive networking for own usage and internal governance. While the pros and cons of internal networking remains concealed within the officials and hidden for the common

customers, the customer portal somehow fails to satisfy the 21st century customers. Apparently, low bandwidth, unwise web page hyper linking, illogical page set ups, all just contribute to the irritation of common net age customers. The portal gives opportunity to register any policy to be tagged up with any one. As a matter of fact, if Mr. 'A' knows the policy number and premium value of certain policy 'X' of Mr. 'B,' 'A' can tag up 'X' with his own Profile in LICI portal and get all the details of the policy. Moreover, though the organization is officially known as Life Insurance Corporation of India, abbreviated, LICI, the portal welcomes a customer to LIC. As a result of this flaw in the website, online payment of premium through the site could not become that popular option for the customers which otherwise it could have. The site fails to show the details of all its recognized agents in its Agent locator section.

[edit] People
LIC is one of the largest employers in India. The organization is headed by 4 officers, namely the Chairman and three Managing Directors. The top brass is appointed by the Government of India after an intensive selection procedure. Though the company was accused to go by mere seniority in number of years for the selection of the senior management, this has changed as seen in the case of Thomas Matthew and A. Dasgupta (Managing Directors). The Chairman assumes authority of the CEO and chairs the board while the Managing Directors are allotted the three main categories of the organization's functioning. The current Chairman, Mr. T.S. Vijayan, is particularly responsible for the major IT infrastructure turnaround that the organization has witnessed and for its advanced EDMS structure. D.K. Mehrotra manages the Marketing Units of LIC, which also happens to be one of the largest spenders on advertising in India. Thomas Mathew manages the close to $187 billion investment portfolio of the company, which is the largest investor in the country. A. Dasgupta manages the engineering and other functions, many of which are very advanced in the Indian corporate scenario.

[edit] Objectives of LIC of India

Spread Life Insurance widely and in particular to the rural areas and to the socially and economically backward classes with a view to reaching all insurable

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persons in the country and providing them adequate financial cover against death at a reasonable cost. Maximize mobilization of people's savings by making insurance-linked savings adequately attractive. Bear in mind, in the investment of funds, the primary obligation to its policyholders, whose money it holds in trust, without losing sight of the interest of the community as a whole; the funds to be deployed to the best advantage of the investors as well as the community as a whole, keeping in view national priorities and obligations of attractive return. Conduct business with utmost economy and with the full realization that the moneys belong to the policyholders. Act as trustees of the insured public in their individual and collective capacities. Meet the various life insurance needs of the community that would arise in the changing social and economic environment. Involve all people working in the Corporation to the best of their capability in furthering the interests of the insured public by providing efficient service with courtesy. Promote amongst all agents and employees of the Corporation a sense of participation, pride and job satisfaction through discharge of their duties with dedication towards achievement of Corporate Objective.

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