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Micro-insurance companies - the need for the hour


INSURANCE is a way to protect the economic value of an asset. It is in the human nature, that we try to protect our near and dear ones from any financial loss which they might have to undergo due to any unfortunate or unforeseen event. Insurance is a way to compensate or protect from these losses.


The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) is the regulatory body in India that regulates and commands all the insurance companies in the country, both Life Insurances and General Insurance companies. The IRDAI has created a special category of insurance policies called micro-insurance policies to promote insurance coverage among economically vulnerable sections of society. It defines micro-insurance as a general or life insurance policy with a sum assured of Rs. 50,000 or less. Micro-insurance is an important tool for people in India as most of them belong to the middle-class or low-income group and are prone to fall under the poverty line.


According to the economic survey of 2020-21, it was found out that in India, the overall insurance coverage has not seen much improvement. From 2.71% in 2001, to 3.76% in 2019. The key reasons for low insurance penetration in India are due to:-

  • Lack of awareness

  • High cost of distribution

  • High premiums

  • Lack of customization

In order to reduce this condition many insurtech start-ups and tech companies are exploring the micro-insurance segment.


BIMAPLAN is a Bangalore based micro-insurance start-up. The start-up deals in creating an over-the-counter, low-premium insurance products by working with insurers. Their annual premium ranges from INR 350-3,500 ($5- $50).


Founded in 2020, the company has recently raised an amount of $2.5 million in its pre-series A funding round. The event saw participation from many global VC, angel investors and the company’s existing investors. Amino Capital, Emphasis Ventures (EMVC), Gokul Rajaram of Doordash, Arjun Sethi of Tribe Capital, RaSa Future Fund, Dream Incubator, 2am Ventures, Samyakth Capital, and Shanti Mohan are a few names of the participants in this event.

Since the start of their journey in 2020, the company has already witnessed a significant development. In March 2021, they raised $500k in a seed round. The event witnessed participation from Y Combinator, FinSightVentures, among others.


With their recent funding, the company will focus in enhancing its team, their products and ramp up its distribution. In order to redefine the insurance experience of Indian consumers, the founder and CEO of Bimaplan, Vikul Goyal, plans in strengthening their core- leadership team.


The company has already kick-started its operations, by launching an insurance-in-a-box product. It allows its partners to sell embedded insurance products to their customers seamlessly. It reduces the need for extensive training of resellers and agents. Also, the company has started pilots with its partners ranging from fintech to traditional financial industry. A pilot is an initial small-scale implementation that is used to prove the viability of a project idea. The company plans to initiate more pilots in the upcoming months with its other partners.

 

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