For 2014, ASIROM wants to focus all its efforts on improving the services it provides to customers


Interview with MARIANA DIACONESCU, President of ASIROM.

What was the strategy of Asirom formeeting its targets in 2013? And whatwas the most successful package of thecompany?

In 2013 we aimed at balancing ourportfolio, by promoting the optional homeinsurances, the Business IMM product,which had a constantly ascending trend, aswell as life insurances (individual, for familiesand groups of employees from variouscompanies). Out of the entire portfolio ofASIROM products, the most remarkableevolution was experienced by the segmentof ‘property’ products, facultative homeinsurances, Business IMM.Additionally, for 2013, the managementof ASIROM made the strategic decisionto lower the exposure on auto insurances,because of the high claims ratio in2012, while also anticipating a decrease ofthe volume of gross written premiums.We can say that this is a planned loss, butthe long-term effects will be positive.The strategy assumed in 2013 willprove its effectiveness in the results of 2014.

What are the prospects and noveltieswhich Asirom prepares for its customers?What will be the situation ofgross written premiums at the end ofthe year?

For 2014, ASIROM commits itself tolevel insurance packages that will grantcomplete protection to its present andfuture customers: life – home – auto. Allyear long, we will conduct cross-sellingcampaigns aimed at supporting the customersof the company with protectionfor everything that is important to them.Given the difficult conditions of the economy,in general, and of the insurance marketin particular, for 2014 we do notexpect an increase above the economicgrowth rate at country scale.As a matter of fact, the results of aninsurance company are the image of theservices it provides, and for 2014ASIROM wants to focus all its efforts onimproving the services it provides to customers.As for the gross written premiums,the planning includes increases in allcategories of non-auto insurances. This isan ambitious plan, but I am confidentthat the ASIROM team will meet all itsobjectives.

Will you have an increase in the numberof contracts this year?

If yes, inwhat segment?Compared to 2013, we expect anincrease in the number of contracts thisyear, especially in the home and life segments.In the Property segment, ASIROM hasa wide range of products that address severaltypes of customers, depending on theprotection degree they want.

Same goes with life insurances,where the range of products isequally diversified and flexible,depending on the needs andresources of each customer.Starting 2013, ASIROM alsostarted selling health insurances,thus completing its product portfolioin 2014, with the sale of thistype of product being among ourpriority targets.

What can you tell us aboutauto insurances and homeinsurances, both in 2013 and2014?

2013 was a difficult year, butthe restructuring goals weassumed for the last year havebeen reached and the results willbe clearly visible starting 2014,especially the decrease of the claimratio and the improvement of thequality of services we provide.The positive impact of theactions conducted in 2013 will bespecifically present in the autoinsurances segment. We can saythat the problems encountered bythe market of auto insurances alsomarked this company, and I meanthe aging car fleet, the decline ofthe sales of new automobiles. Inthe last quarter of 2013, however,Asirom launched a new Cascoproduct that was better calibratedto suit the needs of our customers.Coming home insurances, thedecline of the real estate markethad a significant impact on thissegment of insurances, and nomajor increase of the real estatemarket is expected in 2014 either.Nevertheless, I am confident that,due to the new legislation ofmandatory insurances, propertytypeinsurances will re-enter anupward trend.

Is Romania a difficult marketfor insurances? Why? IsRomania still courted by theinvestors interested in theinsurance market?

The Romanian economicenvironment is going through adifficult time which implicitlyaffects the insurance market aswell. There are numerous factorsthat contribute to describing theRomanian insurance market as‘difficult’, such as: the stagnationof customers’ incomes, the trendof purchasing mandatory insuranceto the detriment of facultativeones. Foreign investors continueto have confidence in thepotential of the Romanian market,we believe.

As you see it, where does theinsurance market stand nowand how would you characteriseit this year? Trends? Isthere any talk about a “redcode”?

The insurance market ofRomania has not completed the‘coming of age’ process yet. 2013is the first year of growth since thestart of the economic crisis, whichis a positive fact, but this is notenough. In order to demonstratethat this growth was not fortuitous,year 2014 should end withsimilar, or even higher growth. Iam fully confident that the slightlyascending trend of 2013 is thefirst step toward the improvementof macroeconomic conditions,but this improvement will not beimmediate. We expect the marketof non-life insurances to remainconstant, or have an increase oflittle significance, given the factthat neither demand, nor offerhad important fluctuations, sopricing will make the difference.

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