As a pioneer in the insurance industry in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Société Financière d’Assurance au Congo (SFA Congo) is working to strengthen its position as a leader and innovate in a sector that has been open to private companies only since 2018.
The market, which is rapidly expanding, was valuated at about $300 million in 2023. Four company leaders, CEO Pascal Doye; Patrick Mukendi, the Secretary General; Board Advisor Valéry Safarian and Board Member, Philippe Nantieras unveil the priorities and objectives of SFA Congo for 2024.
Q. | Can you give us a brief overview of the insurance sector in the DRC and tell us about SFA’s current position?
A. Mukendi: For a long time, characterized by the state operator’s monopoly, it was in 2015 that its liberalization was consecrated by the law on Insurance Code. This law established the Regulatory and Control Authority for Insurance (ARCA), which effectively came into existence in 2017.
The market thus has seven non-life insurance companies, three life insurance companies, two reinsurance companies, and around thirty brokerage companies.
SFA notably leads the corporate insurance market with nearly 25% market share.
Q. | What are the current international partnerships of SFA and how do these partnerships contribute to its growth and strength?
A. Safarian: Our insurance company has entered into international partnerships with leading global insurers, reinsurers, managers, and service providers.
Our international partnerships allow us to:
- Access major international clients in the DRC: We can offer our products and services to international clients of these global leaders such as Allianz, AIG, Cigna, Helvetia, and even regional insurers like Hollard, Sanlam, etc.
- Offer a more comprehensive range of products and services: They bring their expertise in specific areas, such as health insurance, engineering insurance or technical branches. This enables us to insure different cement plants, mining operations, or leading breweries globally in their fields.
- Reduce our costs: This includes cost-sharing, such as research and development costs, marketing costs, or claims management costs. It allows us to become more competitive.
Here are some concrete examples of how our international partnerships contribute to our growth and strength:
In Africa, we have entered into a partnership with a leading actuarial consultant who helps and assists us in developing rates tailored to the risks involved in developing new insurance products. This has allowed us to establish ourselves in rapidly growing segments and generate new revenue from new products such as health insurance.
In Belgium, a partnership with a ‘marine’ or ‘cargo’ claims manager to improve our claims management was concluded. This has allowed us to reduce our claims management costs and improve customer satisfaction.
Q. | How does SFA secure its commitments and reinsurance in the face of challenges in the Congolese market? A. Nantieras: One of SFA’s primary concerns has always been to secure the commitments of its reinsurance placements and, in parallel, SFA’s commitments to its insured (clients). To do this, and to summarize, SFA defines and adapts its reinsurance program (by line of business) according to its strategy, its capital, its development, and its retention policy.
Q. | Can you reveal the main points of SFA’s strategy for the year 2024?
A. Doye: For 2024, SFA aims to strengthen its leadership position in the corporate sector and provide our clients with our expertise in the areas of goods importation, fire, engineering, civil liability, fleet insurance, and other insurance lines.
At the same time, SFA aims to develop insurance for individuals and provide protection and support in the event of a claim for every household.
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