INSURANCE KAZAKHSTAN

Kazakhstan 2018 | FINANCE | B2B

Financial insurance is currently attractive for businesses and insurance remains in high demand.

Dauren Imanzhanov
DAUREN IMANZHANOV
Chairman
Nomad Insurance
Damir Khaibullin
DAMIR KHAIBULLIN
Chairman
Standard Insurance

What have been some of your key achievements in the past few years?

DAUREN IMANZHANOV We have had a number of new projects in the last few years. One of our new initiatives was a social project that includes financial assistance for children and the less well off, especially where it relates to medical procedures. Our motto is people helping people all the time, which is something we truly believe in and live by. In terms of our overall performance, the company maintained its position and grew in a number of sectors as a result of our strong focus on quality service. As the largest insurer in the transportation insurance sector, we control 12% of this market and have maintained this position by emphasizing service above all else. We are not expanding our reach as much as we are doubling down on the quality of our services. We seek to be the best in every category of customer service, and we go to great lengths to ensure that clients feel welcome and taken care of. Due to the condition of the market and national bank requirements, the insurance market is likely to shrink and only the strongest will survive. This is why we focused a great deal on service quality.

DAMIR KHAIBULLIN Our company has changed significantly in the past two to three years. We acquired an Allianz insurance portfolio in 2016. We also partnered with a life company and branded it as Standard Life. Our strategy therefore was adjusted and we have new opportunities to improve and develop. We pay a great deal of attention to the development of our team, training, and business process automation. We created our own training center in order to develop highly qualified insurance specialists across Kazakhstan. Also, our clients can now see and make all transactions on the internet, from insurance purchases to payments. In terms of our customer base, it has reached about 60% of our business because we include reinsurance. If we consider growth alone, it would be about 30%. Our attitude is to be conservative and our portfolio is considered extremely low risk. We have many reinsurance partners and that gives us some stability in the eyes of our customers. Then there are our IT and digitalization efforts, with innovations that are related to both corporate and retail segments.

What trends do you see in the insurance market and how are the major players adjusting to these developments?

DI We are all trying to adjust to changes in the market. One of most important changes will be the online insurance card. The most important step to take in order to make online insurance a success is education. We plan on having special online agents who will educate people on how insurance works and why they should sign up. Gradually, we hope to bring in most of our clients into this new system. Nonetheless, awareness is a huge problem in Kazakhstan, and many people underestimate the importance of having insurance. People often only realize that they need insurance after there is a problem. We want to educate people at the secondary school and university level about the importance of insurance and the value it can bring to their life. If we compare Kazakhstan to the region, however, we are in a better place in terms of how developed the insurance market is.

DK Financial markets are always changing. Our change begins with our regulator, and the regulator starts the process of risk testing those financial markets. The newest changes in the market were prompted by the Central Bank in 2016. As far as insurance goes, the sector has grown because the economic situation has also improved. Most people have insurance now because it is compulsory. However, there is a second wave of customers that are pushed by banks or other institutions to get insured. The next level will go to into life insurance more heavily. As for corporate insurance, we have seen a decline since 2016. We cannot really compare local businesses to international companies that can understand the risks well with a professional assessment. However, government companies and small businesses are becoming more professional as well. The central bank's requirements are getting stronger and in 2018 we expect it to implement additional legislation in the insurance area.