Financial intermediaries applaud the ease of doing business promise

25 October 2012 Gareth Stokes
Gareth Stokes, FAnews Online Editor

Gareth Stokes, FAnews Online Editor

The loudest applause at the 18 October 2012 Momentum Myriad / Multiply product enhancement launch was reserved for initiatives that would make it easier for the gathered financial intermediaries to conduct business with the insurer. Hundreds of brokers de

Phillip du Preez, Head of Momentum Retail Insurance was on hand to provide an overview of one of the country’s most respected financial services brands. He started with the big numbers that confirm the company’s status in the market for diversified financial services. Momentum Retail is part of MMI Holdings, which is currently the country’s third largest insurer. With R8.2 billion in recurring premium and an embedded value of R13 billion Momentum Retail accounts for 40% of the holding company’s market capitalisation. Assets under administration on the wealth platform total R162 billion…

Focusing on financial wellness

Momentum Retail employs approximately 2500 staff and boasts 1.8 million policyholders and 2.2 million policies. Du Preez singled out the current ratio of policies to policyholders (around 1.2) as a statistic he would like to see improve over the next couple of years. He pointed out that intermediaries could take advantage of numerous cross-selling opportunities arising from the recent merger of Momentum and Metropolitan. It was also essential that both brands extend their reach into the so-called mid-income segment.

Exciting initiatives to look out for through 2013 include the leveraging of the Momentum / UNISA Financial Wellness Index and the emergence of a strong and independent Momentum Short-Term Insurance (MSTI) division. “We are developing and utilising the Momentum / UNISA Financial Wellness Index to educate consumers about their levels of financial wellbeing,” said Du Preez. He said that financial wellness was central to what Momentum Retail and its intermediaries strive for. In an ideal future he would like to see each of Momentum’s staff and distribution partners putting the consumers’ financial wellness first.

It is still early days but intermediaries can look forward to big things from MSTI now that the Competition Commission has given the ok for Momentum to buy 100% of the short-term insurer. “MSTI is a big part of our growth initiative going forward,” said Du Preez. “We are finally free to use our own license to invest heavily in short-term solutions that make sense to intermediaries”.

Pushing the “ease of business” agenda

The product-specific innovations and enhancements announced at the launch were part of the group’s broader “ease of doing business” initiative. Du Preez said that Momentum was constantly evolving in line with the feedback from its intermediated distribution channel. On-going product and process development at the insurer would therefore be aimed at making it easier for intermediaries to conduct business with the group and easier to comply with the regulation. “We already have a wide range of market leading innovative products that are a core part of the Momentum Retail DNA,” he said. “And we understand that to play in the competitive insurance industry we need to offer competitive products and continuously bring new and innovative solutions to the market”.

The following are some of the innovations, enhancements and incentives announced at the launch:

- New generation income protection (reinventing disability and savings solutions). Momentum has completely overhauled its Longevity Protector benefits so that your clients income protection needs can be met in the run up to retirement as well as during retirement.

- The insurer, through its Myriad product, is the first to offer 150% cover for protection against a long life with disability. Additional cover is provided by way of five-yearly (a payment every five years) payments over-and-above the normal disability benefits.

- In the event your client does not claim against the disability cover the Myriad product now  offers a welcome boost to retirement savings. Depending on their solution clients could receive both an income protector and lump sum disability ‘boost’ upon retirement and then again at age 80.

- A Momentum Myriad underwriting concession, valid throughout Q42012, allows qualifying clients with fully underwritten risk policies to purchase additional cover with no additional medical underwriting (conditions apply of course).

- The Myriad Designer is a new expert solution to help you to select the right benefits and options based on your clients’ needs… Its innovative template system allows you to design and carry out comprehensive quotes in just a few mouse clicks… And – most importantly – the inputs to the program are automatically recorded as your record of advice!

- Momentum also announced the streamlining a number of its ‘new business’ business processes to eliminate paperwork and ensure faster turnaround times. It expects to roll out similar initiatives in claims processing too.

From innovation to happy policyholders

Myriad has grown from strength to strength since its humble beginnings in 2002. It is now a powerhouse in the life insurance industry with more than 300000 insured lives, in excess of R800 billion in total cover and approximately R11 billion in new cover added every month. Momentum has paid out R26.5 billion in risk claims over the past decade… Policyholders have also benefited from non-risk incentives such as R700 million in Momentum Interactive discounts and the R340 million allocated to Retirement Boosters.

Editor’s thoughts: Today’s newsletter offers a static snapshot of an extremely dynamic presentation. We cannot cover all of the product and process innovation announced at the launch. But we can suggest that independent intermediaries take a close look at what Momentum Retail has to offer versus its competitors… That said: It is sometimes easy to get distracted by glitzy presentations… Did you attend the 2012 Momentum Myriad / Multiply launch event? And were you blown away by the insurer’s latest product offerings? Please add your comment or send it to


Added by Linz, 25 Oct 2012
Great launch, just a pity the presentation went on soooo long after a week where independent advisors had a plethora of launches to attend that same week. Would prefer entertainment to be kept to a minimum. Black Byrd could have been reserved for AFTER the event only. Also cut down on each exec having to have their say when so many new features are launched. Otherwise I am keen to up my support as Momentum seem to be heading in the right direction for clients and advisors alike.
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