Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty (AGCS), Allianz Group’s unit for corporate & specialty insurance business, has opened a branch office in South Korea to serve global corporate clients.
AGCS said it has become the first foreign non-life insurer in almost a decade to receive regulatory approval from South Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) to open a branch in Seoul, which operates with a local insurance license.
AGCS has been active in the South Korean market for several years providing reinsurance capacity for local insurers, the company said in a statement.
There are significant opportunities for growth in the corporate and specialty insurance segment in South Korea, said AGCS. The company cited the country’s rising number of large infrastructure projects in railways, ports and subway lines, and a focus on environmental liability, which all require tailored insurance solutions with significant capacity.
In addition, the automotive, electronics and high-tech communication industries are strong contributors to the South Korean economy, AGCS said.
South Korea is the world’s 11th largest economy and the 4th largest in Asia. AGCS estimates that the Asian non-life insurance market currently accounts for about 30 percent of global market premiums and AGCS expects this to grow approximately 5 percent each year.
“The local office in Seoul will allow us to serve both local South Korean and global companies with South Korean interests much more efficiently,” said Carsten Scheffel, AGCS board member and chief regions and markets officer for Asia.
“Already, more than 11 percent of our global clients have operations in South Korea protected under our international insurance programs,” he added.
“We have seen an increase in demand for global insurance programs as more South Korean firms look to expand overseas as well as from the growing pool of global corporations with South Korean interests,” said Mark Mitchell, Regional CEO for AGCS Asia. “Our expertise in serving clients with international activities will allow us to provide the best coverage for clients as they seek to compete on a global scale.”
CEO of AGCS South Korea
Noh Chang Tae will assume the role of CEO of AGCS South Korea. Chang Tae, who is a Korean national, was previously in the regional market management team in AGCS Singapore, and has almost 25 years of experience in the insurance market.
“AGCS has been serving the South Korean corporate insurance market since 2010 from the AGCS Hong Kong and Singapore offices but having an on-shore presence in Seoul will allow local teams to deliver more tailored and relevant solutions for our customers,” he said.
The South Korean team will initially consist of 13 underwriters and market facing staff, which will be reinforced through additional hiring of local talent.
Growing Regional Footprint
The South Korea branch is the latest addition to AGCS Asia’s regional footprint which currently includes Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, China, India, Brunei and Myanmar, supported by Allianz Group entities and network partners in other countries.
The company’s Asian business contributed 5 percent to its global premium volume of €7.6 billion (US$8.6 billion) in 2016. The opening of the South Korea branch means that AGCS now operates with its own teams in 31 countries, including all the top 10 insurance markets worldwide, as well as through other Allianz companies or network partners in over 210 countries and territories, the company said.
Source: Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty (AGCS)
Was this article valuable?
Here are more articles you may enjoy.