Atlas Magazine March 2022

Insurance in Africa, a reshape dynamic

Africa has become a real battleground where insurance giants, pan-African groups and small local players are engaging in a face-off but with unequal weapons.
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The search for growth for some, strategic redeployment for others, the concerns differ but the financing capacity remains the core issue.

After much vacillation, international groups such as AXA, Allianz and Prudential have finally adopted targeted strategies, focusing their activities on large corporate or specialty risks and on health. They are looking for markets and segments with growth, profitability and cash flow potential, targeting Morocco, Nigeria, Egypt, Kenya and Côte d’Ivoire.

Other players, other strategies. Engaged in a real race against time, the pan-African insurance groups are now embarking on a meshing strategy of the continent. Their leader is Sanlam which, in two decades, has been present in 32 African countries. Very offensive, they are multiplying the number of shareholdings and the creation of companies, not overlooking low premium markets and not hesitating to buy portfolios from international groups.

In the shadow of the international and pan-African groups, other insurers are struggling to stay afloat. Without major financial resources and lacking opportunities, they can only conduct limited operations.

Africa accounted for 60.190 billion USD of life and non-life premiums in 2020, representing 0.95% of the world premium. South Africa alone accounts for 67.5% of the continent's premiums. Apart from the latter, there are nearly 1 000 insurers sharing a premium of about 20 billion USD. This is in fact too little for too many.

For the time being, each one is placing its pawns in the hope of being a game changer on the market or simply surviving.

Atlas Magazine N°189 March 2022

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