SM sells travel, CTPL, dengue insurance | Inquirer Business

SM sells travel, CTPL, dengue insurance

By: - Business Features Editor / @philbizwatcher
/ 04:49 PM September 06, 2017

SM’s Mall of Asia

The SM group has opened up its vast shopping mall network to be a pioneering sales platform for insurance, beginning with the simplest products that require relatively small premium payments like compulsory third party liability (CTPL), travel and dengue insurance.

Eventually, the plan is to offer insurance even for pets, motorcycles and off into the future, insurance for weddings that fail to push through.


The group has teamed up with 63-year-old Filipino-owned insurer Pioneer to offer these products to the mass market in a program called “InsureME@SM” or short for “insurance made easy at The SM Store.”


The idea of selling insurance through the SM group’s department store chain – in the same counter where people pay their utility bills – came from BDO Unibank chair and SM Investments Corp. vice chair Teresita Sy-Coson, who had seen similar arrangements work well in overseas markets.

But the challenge in the domestic market is that awareness about insurance products is much lower compared to other markets, Tan said. This is reflected in the very low insurance penetration rate in the country, which the SM group deemed as an opportunity.

“If we could make insurance more accessible, then it would create better awareness,” BDO Insurance Brokers Inc. general manager and senior vice president Tracy Tan said in a press briefing on Wednesday. “If we offered products that were simple enough to obtain over the counter, then it would increase people’s appreciation of what insurance is all about.”

Furthermore, Tan said Sy-Coson did not want to limit the initiative to one product, noting that retailing was all about giving choices to the consumer – “which is one of the things that SM is good at and is known for.”

Tan said SM group had tied up with Pioneer exclusively on the distribution of the products mentioned because this insurance group was committed to invest in the system needed to roll out these products to the mass market.

On travel insurance, Pioneer’s Safe Trip Comprehensive Travel Insurance Worldwide 2.5M provides medical treatment cover of up P2.5 million and satisfies the Schengen Visa requirement. It also offers personal accident up to P1 million, personal liability up to P1.5 million and covers travel inconveniences, such as trip cancellation, flight delay and loss of baggage. It also provides access to emergency and travel assistance hotlines. Safe Trip also comes in the one million (for worldwide travel) and P500,000 (for domestic travel) variants.


On medical insurance against dengue, Pioneer’s MediCash Dengue Insurance provides a P10,000 cash assistance in the event the covered person is diagnosed with dengue, even if diagnosis does not require hospital confinement. The P10,000 cash assistance pays on top of health maintenance organization (HMO) and Philippine Health Insurance Corp.

CTPL is required by law before any vehicle can be registered with the Land Transportation Office (LTO). The insurance provides up to limit coverage for the death, disablement and medical expenses of a person injured because of an accident involving the covered vehicle.

In the future, Tan said this platform would offer pet, motorcycle and possibly, even wedding cancellation insurance products.

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By the end of 2017, SM Prime will have 65 malls in the Philippines – 22 of which are in Metro Manila, 33 in Luzon outside of Metro Manila, five in the Visayas and five in Mindanao.

TAGS: dengue insurance, Pioneer Insurance, SM store, travel insurance

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