The Business Year

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A series of new policy reforms have shaken up the industry a little, but once consumers have grown accustomed to these improved governance and transparency structures, both demand and supply stand to benefit.

Mahmoud M. Elmadhoun

CEO, Kingdom Brokerage Insurance & Reinsurance

In terms of the professionalism of our work and what we recommend, Saudi Brokers is one of the top three or four companies. Many people do not understand the job of an insurance broker, which acts as the eyes of the insurer and on behalf of their client in all forms of coverage. This is what Saudi Brokers does well. We make sure the insurance company can defend both itself and the client. In terms of volume, Saudi Brokers not only chases new businesses, but is careful about being conservative in its business for the simple reason that we need to service clients. One cannot continue to increase volume with no service. Unfortunately, many industry losses are caused by brokers chasing volume rather than profit. Saudi Brokers tries to create a balance as much as possible. The regulators are doing a great job, though the market is not ready for the current regulatory framework. Compared to Europe, we are far off and cannot apply the same regulations to our small market; insurance was truly only legalized in Saudi Arabia in 2008.

Faker Rais ACTING

CEO, United Cooperative Assurance

We started operations in 2013 with only six employees, and our initial focus was on direct insurance, with a division for reinsurance following suit in 2014, though we obtained both licenses from the beginning. Today, we are one of the top insurance and reinsurance brokers in Saudi Arabia. In 2018, we made a significant and innovative leap with the launch of our web portal, Bawabti, moving into the direction of a technology-based service provider. Our corporate clients can log in and do all their interactions online, with access to transactions, addition, mediations, certificates, generations of SOAs, and account statements. For us, it also eases operations as we can manage all our KPIs leaving our back office ready to jump in to help with questions or inquiries from our clients. Not all brokers have such a servicing tool to offer to their clients, and this is our unique selling point. It will help us grow our clientele base and reduce operational costs, freeing us to focus on client relationship management instead of operations.

Abdulaziz A.K. El Khereiji

CEO & Managing Director, Abdulaziz A.K. El Khereiji

2017 was a good year for the company, with profits of about USD9.06 million on USD155 million worth of premiums. The company writes all types of businesses: motor, medical, engineering, property, marine, energy—where we have a great portfolio—and aviation. Motor insurance is on top, followed by engineering, energy, and medical. As far as VAT is concerned, 2018 was certainly a transitional year. In the first year, there will certainly be an impact on certain provisions, especially when it comes to unearned premium reserves (UPR). However, the market will return to normal once people better understand the mechanism of VAT and get used to paying it. The impact will be seen later in 2018 and will be on whatever business is written in 2017. Many obstacles are preventing us from collecting due VAT premiums, especially from motor businesses and individuals, mostly because of non-response. However, there is always daily contact with corporate clients, which makes collecting VAT significantly easier.

Imad Husseini

Managing Director, Saudi Brokers

One of our board members once told us that we should look for the right blend between a multinational culture and a family-run business. We try to go in between, being professional with corporate governance and all that comes as part of being a multinational group like Chubb, while still keeping the flavor of a local company, especially in being close to our customers and adapting policies and procedures that reflect local realities. This has helped us operate very efficiently over the years. We are not huge in terms of market share, but we are one of the best companies when it comes to return on equity and sustainable profitability. The company started 49 years ago as an insurance agency and 30 years ago as an insurance company. Since then, we have not had a single year with losses. We provide all insurance services with the exception of health. In terms of SAMA’s recent regulatory updates, they are forcing everyone to raise their standards to an international level, which is much better.



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