INTERVIEW: Dominant Old Mutual says no acquisition plans

INTERVIEW: Dominant Old Mutual says no acquisition plans

By Bernard Mpofu, HARARE, September 15 (The Source) – Old Mutual Zimbabwe says it has no plans to acquire undercapitalised short-term insurers despite a regulator’s report indicating that a third of the sector’s players have not met minimum capital requirements, its chief executive said on Monday.

Last year the Insurance and Pension Commission doubled the minimum capital requirements for the sector, with short-term insurers required to achieve a minimum capital level of $1,5 million and life assurers having to put up $2 million. This has resulted in some non-life insurance companies failing to meet the June 30 deadline.

“When you have a dominant market position, growth by acquisition is not a desirable thing,” group chief executive Jonas Mushosho said in an interview with The Source.

“We would pursue organic growth instead of growth by acquisition. At the moment, if you look at our position, we continue to look for opportunities in new clusters of economic activities such as the retail sector.”

IPEC said it had deregistered five underwriters in the first quarter ending March and cancelled registration of four insurers, bringing the number of registered and operational insurance companies and reinsurers to 25 and nine, respectively.

The deregistered insurers are Agricultural Insurance Company, Jupiter Insurance Company, SFG Insurance Company and Suremed Health Insurance Company.