Friday 26 August 2011: Woolworths has today expanded its financial services offer with the launch of Woolworths Insurance – a suite of simple, convenient and affordable insurance products designed to offer significant value for money for everyday customers. The first products to launch will be Life Insurance and Pet Insurance with additional products rolling out over time.
Woolworths Insurance will be a cost effective, flexible and easy to understand alternative to many existing insurance options providing financial protection for the things we value most in life. In addition, Woolworths Everyday Rewards members who have joined and linked to Qantas Frequent Flyer will also have the ability to earn Qantas Frequent Flyer(1) points when they pay premiums on eligible products.
Woolworths Head of Insurance George Hughes said: “We intend to have a long term presence in the insurance sector, with the ability to cater for all our customers’ insurance needs. Insurance is the next growth phase of our well-established financial services offer and will enable us to continue to bring innovative, affordable and no-nonsense products to our customers. Whether it’s groceries, credit cards, mobile phone plans and now insurance, our customers trust Woolworths to deliver products and services that are reliable, uncomplicated and great value for money.”
“Our research tells us that many everyday Australians find insurance difficult to understand and access, to the extent that 95% of families do not have adequate levels of life cover(2). We very much view our role as that of a market challenger to provide everyday Australians with access to insurance products that may previously have been out of their reach or new types of cover that can protect against unforseen expenses.”
Woolworths Life Insurance
Woolworths Life Insurance will offer peace of mind cover from $100,000 to $1.5 million dependant on age and income, all Australian Residents aged between 18 and 65 are eligible to apply with cover starting from as little as $1.42 a week(3). It’s easy to apply over the phone with no medicals, blood tests or complex forms to fill in. Premiums are flexible and affordable with fortnightly, monthly or annual payment options as well as optional benefits to cover children or total and permanent disability. The policy is guaranteed renewable for life provided premiums are paid on time, regardless of any changes to health or lifestyle.
Woolworths Pet Insurance
The pet insurance segment is one of the fastest growing areas of the insurance market but there are still millions of uninsured pets in Australia. Woolworths Pet Insurance will give comfort when it comes to caring for the four legged members of the family. It can cover up to 80% of the cost of eligible vet bills and is available for domestic dogs and cats. Premiums are also flexible with fortnightly, monthly or annual payment options.
Woolworths will partner with Swiss Re, one of the world’s leading reinsurance firms and The Hollard Group, a leading international insurance provider.
Under the alliance, Woolworths will be responsible for marketing and the overall value proposition of the offer. Woolworths will leverage the skills, expertise and infrastructure of established providers, Swiss Re and Hollard. For general insurance products Swiss Re will act as reinsurer to the underwriter, Hollard. For the Life Insurance product, Swiss Re will act as the underwriter and Hollard will act as the distributor and administrator of the products, using their proven insurance systems and call centre expertise.
Mr Hughes added: “Clearly this is a first step into the sector with plenty more opportunities still to explore but we are very confident we have structured an effective and low risk model with solid backing from our two highly experienced partners.”
Richard Enthoven, Managing Director of Hollard in Australia said “We are extremely proud to have been selected by Woolworths to be its insurance partner. Based on our extensive international experience distributing insurance in partnership with large retailers, we are confident that the Woolworths Insurance initiative is the single largest untapped insurance opportunity in Australia.”
(1) Qantas does not endorse, is not responsible for and does not provide any advice, opinion or recommendation about the insurance products
(2) The Lifewise/NATSEM Underinsurance Report: Understanding the social and economic cost of underinsurance. February 2010
(3) Premium based on a $100,000 benefit for a female non-smoker aged 34
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