Weak insurers soiling industry’s reputation Keli Gadzekpo

BY: Emmanuel Bruce
Mr Keli Gadzekpo

The Group Chief Executive Officer of Enterprise Group, Mr Keli Gadzekpo, has blamed insurance companies in the lower end of the market for the low level of confidence in the sector.

He said out of the 27 registered general insurance companies, the top seven control about 65 per cent of the market, leaving majority of the companies at the tail end of the industry.

“Having that long tail creates problems for the industry.

For third party motor policies, there is almost a National Insurance Commission (NIC) prescribed rate which companies do not have to sell below.”
“However, some of these companies sell below this rate in a bid to attract more customers and when it’s time for claims payment; they are unable to pay it promptly.

This creates a bad name for the whole industry,” he stated.

Mr Gadzekpo said this when the Enterprise Group took its turn at the Ghana Stock Exchange’s (GSE) Facts Behind the Figures session on October 18.

“If you don’t collect the right level of premiums and sell your policies for less then you will be digging your own hole,” he said.

Plans to enter the Nigerian market

The Group CEO disclosed that plans were far advanced to enter the Nigerian market with its insurance products.

“We have been working at it for the last few years and we hope to make the announcement soon. It is coming along positively and we are sure we will get into that market soon,” he noted.

“We are looking at either getting a new licence or an acquisition,” he added.

 He pointed out that its Nigerian business entry strategy would be based on its life insurance business.

Shareholding structure

Touching on the shareholding structure of the company, he said the group currently had 3,528 shareholders.

He said about 85 per cent of the shareholding was held by its top 20 shareholders of which 30 per cent of them were non-Ghanaians.

He said its institutional shareholders constituted 87 per cent of the share structure with retail investors constituting 13 per cent.

New capital requirement

The Group CEO also pointed out that it was poised to meet the new capital requirement that would soon be announced by the NIC.

“We are more than prepared to meet the new capital requirement and we do not have a problem at all,” he noted.

He said the idea behind the increase in the capital requirement was a good one as it would allow insurance companies to have a strong balance sheet that would enable them to pay claims promptly and also help them to manage their risks effectively.

Financial performance

Highlighting the group’s financial performance for 2017 and the first half of the year, the Chief Finance Officer of Enterprise Group, Mr Daniel Larbi-Tieku, said its strategic actions were yielding results as its total assets grew to GH¢ one billion, representing a growth of 28 per cent.

He said its total net income also grew to GH¢543 million, representing an increase of 29 per cent, while its embedded value also grew to GH¢449 million, representing a growth of 35 per cent.

Mr Larbi-Tieku said its total income for the second quarter of 2018 also grew from GH¢245.18 million in the second quarter of 2017 to GH¢286.88 million, representing a growth of 17 per cent.

Total expenses for the same period also increased from GH¢218.28 million to GH¢264.63 million, representing a growth of 21.2 per cent.

Profit for the period, however, decreased from GH¢22.87 million to GH¢18.98 million, representing a decrease of 17 per cent, with total assets growing from GH¢923.34 million to GH¢1.28 billion, representing a growth of 39.1 per cent. — GB