Britam & M-TIBA have received grant funding from Zurich based SCBF for technical assistance to scale up a mobile health insurance solution offered by Britam and accessible on the M-TIBA mobile platform. The SCBF funding will enable deep customer insights through customer research as well as enhance data analytics and drive digital marketing initiatives.
Health insurance penetration in Kenya has remained low exposing households to financial destabilization especially when faced with unexpected medical conditions or critical illness. A policy brief by the Ministry of Health has noted that 2.6 million Kenyan households are at risk of impoverishment as a consequence of healthcare expenditures (Wanjala, 2019). This is especially concerning for low-income households where insurance coverage is even lower (3% in the poorest quintile compared to 42% in the richest quintile). Britam and M-TIBA are partnering to address this gap by offering simple and affordable health insurance that is easily accessible. This product is mainly targeted at informal workers and small businesses.
SCBF is a public-private development partnership (PPDP) that works with partner financial institutions and technical assistance providers to ensure accessibility and increase utilization of financial services within low-income communities in developing and emerging countries. “We are keen to support this partnership as we believe that it will further SCBF’s objective of enhancing the living standards and better response to adverse effects of health emergencies by building resilience in low income populations..” said Sitara Merchant, CEO of SCBF.
“Britam is committed to developing and providing simple and affordable insurance solutions to traditionally underserved customers like small businesses and the informal economy. This funding support from SCBF will allow us, in partnership with M-TIBA, to increase penetration to this target population,” added Saurabh Sharma, Director of Emerging Consumers business at Britam that focusses on underserved customer segments.
To leverage on the ever increasing utilization of mobile phones, the insurance solution is offered on M- TIBA’s mobile platform. Launched in 2020, hundreds of individuals are already insured and this funding is expected to scale up the product outreach even further. Moses Kuria, Managing Director, M-TIBA Kenya commented, “We are passionate about supporting the drive for universal health coverage in Africa and our M-TIBA platform has disrupted the health care space in Kenya. The funding from SCBF is a validation of our efforts and proves that this partnership has great potential in increasing access to quality health care.” Britam and M-TIBA are also collaborating with Cenfri, a South Africa based research agency on this project. Cenfri works with partners like Britam & M-TIBA to deliver impact through research, capacity building, and innovation support in the areas of financial sector innovation, integrity, resilience, and inclusive digital transformation. Jeremy Gray, the lead of resilience team at Cenfri added that this support from SCBF will enable them to drive innovation and replicate the lessons in other parts of the African continent