Risk Sales Remain Stagnant, While Health Insurance Grows


While New Zealand’s health insurance industry has grown for its twelfth consecutive quarter, its life insurance industry growth remains flat, according to statistics released by the Health Funds Association of New Zealand.

Commenting on growth in the health insurance sector, HFANZ chief executive, Roger Styles, said “Much of this growth appears to have come from an increase in the numbers of people with employer-subsidised health insurance as part of an increased focus on wellness in the workplace.”

“People now have access to both a greater volume and a wider range of services and treatments through health insurance,” he said.

nib nz CEO, Robert Hennin

CEO of New Zealand’s second largest health insurer, NIB NZ’s Robert Hennin, said most advisers are selling both life and health insurance.

…most advisers are selling both life and health insurance

He noted the reason behind this is based on a customer’s needs and depending on a client’s age or life events, they may have a health or life need – so most advisers have the ability to sell both.

“I think there are a number of interconnected factors that you see in the New Zealand market,” he said.

“Certainly over the last decade, you’ve seen an increase in people’s wealth and favourable economic conditions overall, so that gives people more choices and more flexibility.”

The life and health industries can both learn from other channels…

The life and health industries can both learn from other channels and customers, Hennin explained.

“When you look at what’s happening in terms of the way our customers live their lives, they are increasingly dealing with their advisers, the companies who provide services for them in a digital way,” he said.

“I think we can all learn from customers in terms of how they would like to interact with us better and faster and I don’t think this means dis-intermediating an adviser at all; I think it means being much more efficient for their client and also for an adviser to interact with a customer and much easier and faster for them to deal with us,” he added.

“So the wonderful thing about digitising our businesses is we’re available 24/7…we become much more accessible and we add much more value to our customer experience. I think we can both learn that from other companies and from our customers.”