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AM BestTV: Life Insurers Drawn to Direct-to-Consumer but Face Obstacles, Say AM Best Analysts

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07/25/2019 | 01:47pm EDT

In this AMBestTV episode, Michael Adams, senior financial analyst, and Igor Bass, financial analyst, both of AM Best, said many life insurers are at varying stages of building direct-to-consumer (DTC) distribution, but they also must address challenges. Click on http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=dtc719 to view the entire program.

Adams highlighted how insurance companies are grappling with DTC distribution.

“There has been a lot of initial interest in the DTC channel by many insurance companies, but they really are in the early stages of determining what their DTC strategy is going to be,” said Adams. “Companies definitely view it as a way of reaching additional customers, as well as accessing the middle market in a more cost-efficient way, but what it is really is more of an ancillary view right now.”

Bass addressed what are the limitations to DTC, especially in complex products.

“Some of the complex products cannot be simply sold over the DTC channel, so companies are trying to keep it simple, for example, simple whole life and simple term life products that could be sold quicker to the consumer in the fastest way possible. Also, there are limitations in cost. It takes a lot of money to start up some of the distribution channels directly, which is keeping some of the companies away as well,” he said.

To access a copy of this special report, titled, “DTC: Expanding Distribution and Seeking Opportunities,” visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=28686.

Recent AMBestTV episodes:

  • Life/Annuity Insurers Better Prepared for Next Downturn, Say AM Best Analysts: Ken Johnson, senior director, and Thomas Rosendale, director, both of AM Best, examine how changes in product mix and asset allocation, along with a focus on asset liability and enterprise risk managements, will likely affect life/annuity insurers in the event of an economic slowdown: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=la719.
  • Cyber Coverage Growth Attracts Competitors, Say AM Best Analysts: Fred Eslami, associate director, and Sam Hanig, senior industry analyst, both of AM Best, review insurers' filing data that shows the top writers of U.S. cyber liability coverage: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=cyber719.
  • Investor Interest in Insurtech Prods Traditional Insurers: Andrew Johnston, global head of insurtech, Willis Re, said many insurers are stepping up their own technology and innovation efforts to better respond to technology-enabled competitors: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=johnston519.
  • Advancing Flood Modeling and NFIP Changes Will Better Target Risk: Patty Templeton-Jones, president, Wright National Flood Insurance Company, said flood modeling is still in relatively early stages, with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) expected to start using its revised risk rating system by October 2020: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=templetonjones519.

AM BestTV covers exclusive AM Best and insurance industry information and reports, targeted topics and key developments in the insurance, reinsurance and related sectors daily. Sign up for alerts of episodes at http://www.ambest.com/multimedia/ambtvsignup.html. View AM BestTV episodes at http://www.ambest.tv.

AM Best is a global rating agency and information provider with a unique focus on the insurance industry. Visit www.ambest.com for more information.

Copyright © 2019 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. and/or its affiliates. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

© Business Wire 2019
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