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Bharti AXA to focus on product rejig

Calcutta, Dec. 3: Bharti AXA General Insurance, a 74:26 joint venture between the Bharti group and French insurance firm AXA, is looking to restructure its product mix more in favour of the commercial segment, a move that could help the firm break even in 2014.

It has also set a capital requirement of Rs 150 crore to Rs 200 crore to fund its future expansion.

Amarnath Ananthanarayanan, CEO and managing director of Bharti AXA, today said the company was lining up products in the commercial line suited for small and medium enterprises and the marine segment following a slowdown in the automobile sector that currently constitutes a lion’s share of the company’s total business.

“Motor insurance constitutes about 70 per cent of our total business and with the sector slowing down, we had to look at the more profitable commercial line segment. At present, it contributes 8 per cent of our business and we are looking to increase it to 20 per cent by March 2014,” Ananthanarayanan said at an interactive session here today.

Bharti Axa has reached Rs 1,000 crore gross written premium this year and is looking to raise the same to about Rs 1,300 crore by 2013. The company, which started its operations in India in 2008, is also looking to break even by 2014. Ananthanarayanan said there was no need for immediate cash infusion, but funds would be necessary later when the company expanded further.

“We have received Rs 60 crore capital from our promoters in September. So, there is no immediate need for funds. But as we grow our businesses, we will need money. The solvency ratio has to be maintained. It will be a function of growth and expenses. We will probably need around Rs 150 crore to Rs 200 crore in next two years.”

At present, the company has a capital base of Rs 850 crore. It plans to add 10 branches to its existing network of 50 and hire 300 more people to take the total headcount to 1,800 by March 2014.

 
 
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