In the latest iteration of Union Bank of the Philippines’ (UnionBank) E-TalkTales, UBX President and CEO John Januszczak, Coherent CEO John Brisco, and Chubb Deputy Regional President for Asia Pacific Glen Browne discussed the ongoing insurance crisis in the Philippines and how UBX’s insurance platform Assured is helping address this crisis through embedded insurance with everyday Filipino experiences powered by innovation and co-creation.
Januszczak highlighted three possible factors that are keeping a lot of Filipinos from availing insurance products. First, he said that it's not easy for most to have even a basic understanding of how valuable insurance can be for them, which is why it's important for providers to make it easier to discover. "You have to make it easier for the consumers to discover the value of insurance. And insurance is obvious when it is hyper-personalized and offered in a hyper-relevant context."
Another problem that is contributing to the local insurance gap is that insurance products can be very challenging to understand. "Products are often too complicated, predicated on old sales models with corresponding jargon that inevitably develops over the years. Often, what is sold is in many cases essentially the same kind of product that my own parents bought over 50 years ago. What is equally concerning is the sub-optimal impact that the complexity has not just on customers, but conventionally, on insurance agents and advisors," Januszczak said.
And lastly, there are also the problems related to distribution. "Traditional intermediaries such as agents, brokers, and bank partners have only so much reach without leveraging digital. On top of this, distribution via these traditional channels requires higher value products to be economically feasible. The cause of traditional sales channels is noble, but ultimately, only economically feasible for the more affluent in our society."
This is where UBX's embeddable insurance platform Assured comes in. With Assured, the goal of UBX is to take monolithic, complex, and expensive products from insurers and make them more accessible.
Through this, UBX also aims to provide a single platform and a single API to make it easier for solutions developers and communities to aggregate and customize protection across multiple insurance providers.
"What we're trying to do is help insurers by making it much easier for them to bring their products and integrate them into the UBX ecosystem. So, we're acting as the facilitator between UBX and insurers so that all the data that has to interact between an insurer and UBX is as consistent and seamless as possible," said Brisco.
"With Assured, it's bringing the complexity of traditional insurance into bite-sized chunks, in a very accessible and easy-to-understand way," said Browne.
"If UBX is trying to think about the experience of the user, Chubb is providing world-class products to fit into that experience, and then Coherent is bringing the technology to enable that to happen, and I think that's a very unique proposition which doesn't really exist across many markets in the world," added Brisco.