Kirloskar Group in Talks to Enter General Insurance

Foreign insurers like Travellers and Ace are eyeing partners here

The Kirloskar Group, which has been in the engineering and machinery business for more than a century, is venturing into the country’s ` . 85,000-crore general insurance business.

People close to the development said the group has begun talks for a joint venture to sell general insurance products in India.

The Kirloskars did not respond to an email query sent by ET in this regard.

Large foreign insurance companies have been trying to enter India’s general insurance market after the government increased foreign investment ceiling to 49% from 26% earlier. Some foreign insurers, including Travellers and Ace, are looking for joint venture partners in India. Kotak Mahindra Bank is the other domestic company looking to enter the non-life insurance market. The business needs an initial capital of `. 100 crore.

In India, there are 28 non-life insurance companies including four in the public sector. The industry is still dominated by public sector companies, with more than 50% of the business written by New India Assurance, National India, Oriental and United India Insurance Company. Liberty Videocon General and Magma HDI General were the last to enter the country’s non-life insurance industry in 2012-13.

There are five standalone health insurance companies. Birla has entered into a partnership with South African MMI Holding to foray into standalone health insurance space. Non-life insurance industry had plunged to single-digit growth rate of 9.3% in premium collection during the last fiscal to . 84,715 crore.`

Source: Economic Times

Date: 27/05/2015

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