Resolution Insurance recently celebrated its tenth anniversary and has eyes on expansion.
Writer Rebecca Wigmore
Project manager Sheridan Halls
Last year marked a period of exciting change for Kenya's Resolution Insurance. Formerly known as Resolution Health East Africa, the company changed its name to reflect its change in status: in February 2013, the country's Insurance Regulatory authority (IRA) gave the go-ahead for Resolution to become a general insurance provider. This means that Resolution is now able to underwrite, retain risks, make investments and better safeguard policy obligations. The company's focus remains on health insurance although there are significant plans to diversify the insurance products offered to customers across the region. this isn't the first time that the company has been seen to lead the way with health insurance – it celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2013 and, in 2003, was the first firm to be registered as a medical insurance provider.
Serving the working man
At present Resolution serves 60,000 active members, most of whom are members of Kenya's burgeoning middle class. The company also works with small- to medium-sized employers in order to provide healthcare packages for individuals, groups and corporate entities. Resolution's approach allows it to reap the benefits of growing businesses. It boasts a strong network of medical service providers including hospitals, clinics and pharmacies who are based across East Africa. Prospective patients can use their Resolution card to receive help with treatment from the list of practitioners published on Resolution's website – as Resolution deals exclusively with these medical professionals, it has been able to build a solid network of doctors, pharmacists and therapists that do not want to lose patients by being unaffiliated with their insurer.
Nduati's grand plan
Kenya is by no means the sole focus of Resolution's business acumen. CEO Peter Nduati has spoken publicly of his ambitions to extend Resolution's reach as part of its vision to be the 'recognised leader and preferred provider of insurance services in Africa'. Resolution already has partnerships in Uganda, South Sudan, and Sudan with International Air Ambulance Care, Speed Insurance and Juba Insurance. Recently, Nduati was also pleased to announce that Resolution will begin trading in Burundi in the near future. This extended reach is part of a triumphant upswing in profits that saw Resolution bring in ksh2.08 billion in 2012. One of the reasons for this sharp increase in profits is not only the diversification of what Resolution can offer its clients but also the change in Kenyan society. Improvements in living standards mean that heart disease and HIV/ aids are being replaced by another killer: cancer. Cancer treatments are often lengthy and expensive, with families having to sacrifice much in order to afford the medical care they need. Resolution's healthcare packages allow cancer patients a way to fund treatment without ruining themselves financially.
Service with a smile
Resolution's commitment to excellent customer service must also account for the firm's rise in profits. Quite apart from the highly trained sales and operational staff, Resolution has a dynamic marketing team that utilises social media to great effect. the company operates a breezy and friendly Facebook page, a twitter feed and a YouTube channel which advise the public on the benefits of healthcare insurance, engage in polls and lifestyle conversations and respond to user questions and feedback. also notable is the company's engagement with wider culture – it regularly provides fun and improving opportunities for its policy holders, from discounts on fashion and pampering events to sponsoring sporting events and Christmas concerts. there are even opportunities for members' children and Resolution offers regular 'Fun Days' and gifts two free tickets to every members' child born in an allotted month, rotating the month for each Fun Day so that no-one misses out. These popular Fun Days are attended by around 1,000 people at a time and are full of activities that range from face painting to acrobatic displays. In a more serious vein, Resolution is also dedicated to making sure its members take advantage of health improving opportunities and publicises free breast cancer screenings, immunisations and health checks. This commitment to healthy living continues on the official website, where a wealth of articles on health issues like depression and early detection of cancer are provided free of charge. With all this online and social engagement, Resolution has positioned itself both as a socially constructive enterprise and a corporation that has not lost its sense of humour. as an exercise in positive branding, it's hard to beat.
Working with resolution at Resolution
Although around half of Resolution's revenue comes from external brokers, the company still retains the services of around 300 internal employees. Around half of these employees are internal business consultants, dedicated solely to sales. Resolution prefers to hire salespeople aged over 25 with at least one year of sales experience – this is a firm that prizes loyalty, stability and keeping employee turnover low. Salespeople are offered incentives and consistent training and development to keep them progressing in their chosen field. There must be something in this formula – at a recent company team-building event, around 30 employees received a commendation for having been with the company since it was incorporated. So what's next for a company that inspires such loyalty? Nduati's plans for expansion across Africa are well underway. There are challenges inherent in this project however not least that 50 percent of Kenyan people live below the poverty line. With this in mind, Nduati has called for tax incentives to inspire Kenya's middle class to embrace life insurance policies and he has urged all insurance providers to play a developmental role in Kenya's economic development. The key to success seems clear: consistent work towards an innovative, competitive marketplace and an economic climate where health insurance is accessible to an even greater proportion of the African people.
For more information please visit www.resolution.co.ke.
CEO Profile: Peter Nduati
Peter Nduati is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Resolution Insurance.
Aged 45, he is an astute entrepreneur, excellent manager, strategic planner and a remarkable human being. He is a business leader in Africa who has demonstrated through Resolution Insurance that it is possible to build an international brand from a simple idea.
Through Nduati's stewardship the general insurer has grown rapidly in the last ten years and today has a presence in five African nations namely Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, South Sudan and Sudan. In 2012, Resolution Insurance gross written premiums increased by 31 percent from kshs1.58 billion to kshs2.07 billion.
Nduati is credited with taking a bold executive step that opened up enhanced benefits of medical coverage for individuals and families. As a result of his innovation, Resolution Insurance became the first company to offer individual maternity benefits, optical, dental and HIV/Aids medical plans to individuals. The company now also covers pre-existing medical conditions for individuals.
He has been involved in a number of Corporate Social Responsibility activities including community service, employee motivation or educational support as well as wellness checks and healthy living advice to members.
Nduati was named Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 in the East Africa round of the Johnnie walker Blue label CNBC Africa all Africa Business leaders awards. The continent's most prestigious business awards, the AABLAS recognise innovators and pioneers in a variety of categories, reflecting the diversity of the African business environment.
Similarly, he has received recognition and has been admitted as a global Fellow in the Africa leadership Institute, the ASPEN initiative. The Africa leadership Initiative (ALI) is a collaborative effort of seven partner organisations in Africa and the U.S. to foster values-based, action-oriented leadership in Africa. All Fellows are highly successful entrepreneurial individuals from business, government and civil society.
A master's degree holder in Economics and Insurance, Mr. Nduati is a chartered insurer with over 20 years' experience in the Insurance Industry. He is a results-focused and effectual leader with proven ability to turnaround and has strengths in Strategic management and Financial Planning, marketing and HR management and Ensuring a good Corporate Culture.
He is currently pursuing a doctorate programme focusing on Entrepreneurship in Kenya. He is also the founder and director of First Benefits Ltd, Pine Creek Holdings and Brown oak ltd which is an investment holding company.
In addition, he sits on the board of Absolute Security Ltd and board of governors of Dagoretti High school. He is the Chairman of AISEC Daystar University and Director of Kenya Rugby Football Union.
A renowned family man, Peter is the proud father of four.