The EFG Eurobank group is making a dynamic bid to enter the field of insurance services and bancassurance via two new insurance companies, EFG Life Insurance and EFG Insurance.The EFG Eurobank group is making a dynamic bid to enter the field of insurance services and bancassurance via two new insurance companies, EFG Life Insurance and EFG Insurance.
Mr N. Nanopoulos, Managing Director of EFG Eurobank, Mr V. Ballis, Deputy Managing Director of the Bank, Mr K. Papamichalopoulos, Managing Director of the two insurance companies, Mr S. Yiokaris, the latter's Director of Marketing, and Mr Aris Xenofos, General Manager of EFG Mutual Funds SA. presented, at a press conference today, the development strategy of the EFG Eurobank group in the area of insurance services, as well as the new products which are on offer through the bank's branch network. As was announced, EFG Life Insurance has equity of GRD 1.5 billion and EFG Insurance equity of GRD 2.2 billion. The two companies operate with a flexible organisational structure, and are operationally linked to the Bank over issues relating to the joint development of new products, the application of common procedures and systems communications. The new products and services that are offered in the field of bancassurance have been designed to provide answers and comprehensive coverage for the insurance needs of today's consumer, free of complicated programme-premium combinations. Products are distributed through the branches of EFG Eurobank, where the customer can obtain comprehensive service through automated sales procedures, which means that both the application for, and issuing of, the insurance policy are completed at the same moment. Speaking of EFG Eurobank group's strategy in the area of insurance services, Mr. N. Nanopoulos, Managing Director of the Bank, highlighted, amongst other things, the fact that the insurance strategy "is part of the wider strategy that we have being consistently pursuing in the past few years, and which consists in staking out a dynamic presence in all areas of finance. The aim of this strategy is, of course, to provide our clients with innovative as well as attractive solutions, as part of an overall approach which will reflect the most up-to-date trends and developments. One of the challenges that lie ahead is the development of the bancassurance sector and services, that is, simple products that combine insurance coverage and banking services in ways that are at once both productive and creative ". Mr. Nanopoulos pointed out that the group is not seeking to develop complicated and expensive services based on a costly network of insurance agents, offering complex insurance products that cover the entire range of client insurance needs. Rather, it aims to offer a set of simple products easily made available through a bank network, which at the same time are competitive with regard to the advantages they offer the client. As he explained, "this is made possible, first, by our low production costs, since there is no need to amortise, through higher prices, the costs that would be associated with an expensive distribution network, and, second, thanks to the attractive investment options we have available for investing our clients' contributions. In a globalised economy, broader investment choices are required, and we can secure these through our collaboration with highly-reputed international organisations such as Deutsche Bank". Deputy Managing Director of EFG Eurobank Mr V. Ballis noted, for his part, that "The combination of insurance and investment services in one unified product - the so-called "unit-linked" product - is perhaps the greatest innovation in the field of finance in recent times. It is the latest episode in a continuing coming together of banks and insurance companies in operational and business matters". Mr Ballis made special reference to the bright development prospects of bancassurance products and services which, as he said, are partly due to economic pressures and the changing nature of people's needs, and partly due to changing consumer purchasing patterns. "Consumers are increasingly turning to life and health insurance for their primary or supplementary coverage against basic risks which, if they materialised, could utterly ruin both family and fortune. Finally, it is becoming increasingly clear to all that an individual's pension needs cannot be left in the state's care alone, the latter appearing unable to respond fully to these needs. It is nowdays vital that every working person plans for his or her pension needs from early on in their working life, by joining a private insurance and pension programme. Banks are therefore called upon to play an especially important role in this area, because of their know-how and reputation in the area of capital-asset management. "Foreseeing the above developments, we believe that Eurobank's setting up of two specialised bancassurance companies is an appropriate move which will allow us to stake our position in the insurance and pensions schemes area in a way that fully responds to the needs of the contemporary Greek consumer. Such a move will also strengthen our position vis-ΰ-vis domestic and foreign competition". The Managing Director of the two companies Mr K. Papamichalopoulos gave a detailed presentation of the products on offer, which, he said, cover people's three basic insurance needs: Life, Health and Property. He also presented a number of insurance programmes which go together with widely-demanded banking products. More specifically, the products' basic features are as follows:
Finally, Mr. Papamichalopoulos made a special reference to the means of distribution of products. The latter will be made available through EFG Eurobank's and Ergobank's branch networks, as well as through the alternative networks, such as Europhone and the Internet (e-Banking).