• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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Democratising insurance through digitisation

Sanlam partners Allianz to provide insurance, financial services in 27 African markets

Digitisation is now a routine part of almost everyone’s lives despite its recency. Information that once required hours of research in a library can now be found at the tap of a button. Today, communicating with someone on the other side of the planet is as easy as saying ‘hello’ to someone on the street. In fact, these days, it’s almost considered a faux pas to not have some kind of online presence. While life in today’s rapidly changing digital world is not without risk and its own challenges, it cannot be denied that the internet, digitisation and social media have made our lives easier.

While everyone defines wealth differently, for most ordinary people wealth is the ability to feed and clothe their family, pay off their home while working, fund their children’s education and development, and have sufficient saved for a comfortable retirement without becoming a burden on others. Wealth might also involve leaving a small legacy to help children and grandchildren on their own wealth journeys. The key to achieving all of these is the ability to manage risk and the best available tool to manage risk is insurance.

Knowledge is key to insurance
According to a 2022 insurance industry report, despite the Nigerian insurance sector valued in the region of ₦500 billion, over 99% of the country’s population remains uninsured. The reasons behind these low penetration levels include price, rampant inflation, lack of knowledge and trust. Studies have shown, for example, that millions of Nigerians report being suspicious of insurance companies. Many others simply don’t know about insurance at all.

Lack of knowledge about how insurance works, its usefulness, which products are necessary or affordable, or which insurers can be trusted, are preventing Nigerians from using insurance to leverage their incomes and assets for long term wealth creation.

Fortunately, educating people about the power of insurance is relatively simple to deal with.


A key mission supporting the vision of the Coronation Group is to democratise wealth creation in Nigeria by sharing knowledge of the tools required to build wealth. While this includes providing specific investment and financial services, it also involves simplifying the general understanding of economics and finance. By helping ordinary people understand markets and money, Coronation helps build wealth by providing ordinary people with the tools to leverage their income and assets to create and preserve wealth.


As modern society uses digitisation to make more goods, services, knowledge, access and power available to all, leading insurance companies have begun to make insurance generally available online. Coronation, for example, has invested heavily in the development of online tools designed to provide clients simple, easily accessible digital access to insurance and wealth creation.

Coronation Life Assurance’s WhatsApp bot, for example, is a digital platform that helps customers buy products and services, manage policies or register claims or communicate with call centre representatives. By enabling simple access and easy use of products, the bot is also making insurance more accessible.

To keep up with changing user expectations, insurance companies are on a never-ending mission to deploy technology to simplify the customer experience and improve perceptions of value for money. This requires that insurers do more than simply tweak the efficiency and productivity of certain products or systems. Instead, customers today expect an end-to-end digital experience to be built from the ground up and applied across the board.

Application Programming Interface (API) technology provides the little pieces of code that allow various devices, software applications, and data servers to communicate with each other and provide responses. API can be used to facilitate any action that an insurance agent might undertake, like retrieving client data or moving it from one system to another when processing a claim. By making the communication between different touchpoints absolutely seamless, APIs act as the key drivers of digitisation in the insurance industry.

Fortunately, you don’t have to be a technology expert to use APIs. Coronation Insurance, for example, provides its own APIs to brokers and qualifying institutions to help them sell Coronation products on their own platforms. APIs employed by insurtech firms can help in customer management and data analytics, for instance. Similarly, insurance agents may use APIs for collating marketing data and storing client records. Carriers, on the other hand, can use APIs to display quotes digitally while potential customers are browsing aggregator platforms, eliminating the need for manually processing quote requests.

APIs support the digitisation of insurance

Integrating APIs can open up a new world of possibilities for insurers by assisting them personalise the customer experience. API-led connectivity also helps insurers enhance productivity, simplifying complicated and repetitive tasks, delivering greater operational efficiency and improved customer experience.

Benefits of using API’s to go digital:

APIs, for example, support customised offerings by making it possible to offer products based on usage trends or other customer needs. APIs also support integration between customers’ mobile and web applications and the insurer’s platform; enabling organisations to track user behaviours and develop customised offerings in real time. This can be particularly beneficial for insurers in today’s new market environment, where customers increasingly expect a frictionless digital experience.

API can also, for example, improve underwriting models and help insurers become more agile and efficient. Coronation Insurance has, for example, used APIs to improve the underwriting process for product buys coming from different channels, reducing the time spent in sorting, extracting, analysing and manually loading data on the core insurance application.


Coronation’s investment in WhatsApp bot and a host of other digital innovations reflect the commitment to democratise insurance for ordinary Nigerians.

By building digital systems that empower customers to understand, access, and use insurance intelligently and effectively, Coronation is delivering on its purpose to help all Nigerians build and preserve their wealth.