Democrance, the UAE-born insurtech startup, has joined forces with AXA, one of the largest global insurers in the GCC region, to launch a new personal accident insurance scheme for customers of the international money transfer service Hello Paisa. Under the partnership, UAE residents remitting money to their home countries in the Middle East, Africa and Asia are now covered by AXA’s accident and disability policy – for free.
Designed by AXA and Democrance, Hello Protect taps into Hello Paisa’s existing customer base and allows its members complimentary access to the personal accident insurance for themselves when transferring money through Hello Paisa’s branches. The platform allows users to manage all their insurance needs via their mobile phones. Payouts for all claims are made instantly via Hello Paisa’s remittance houses in beneficiary countries.
This project is part of the broader AXA Emerging Customers global initiative which aims to improve financial inclusion and accelerate the development of insurance and protection services that cater to the needs of the low- and middle-income classes.
Speaking on the partnership, Michele Grosso, Co-founder and CEO of Democrance, said: “We have witnessed a rising demand for financial solutions amongst the populations that are most at risk and require social protection. Hello Protect enables us to introduce low- and mid-income segments of society to the personal accident insurance and other products. Remittance houses offer prime access points, since the UAE is one of the main remittance-sending countries in the world. India is the largest beneficiary, and receives US$12.6 billion in remittances annually, followed by the Philippines at US$3.5 billion.
Collaborations such as this one reinforce our commitment to closing the protection gap and establishing an ecosystem that supports the financial inclusion through creating accessible financial products.”
Given the volume of remittances from the UAE, the country’s exchange houses and banks have begun to see the value of investing in digital technologies, including mobile apps, to make it easier for residents to send money home.
Michal Matul, Senior Advisor at AXA Emerging Customers, said: “Whilst safety nets exist in the UAE, not being in a position to send money home remains among the biggest concerns for most workers, who are largely the only source of income for their families back home. Offering financial support in cases of emergency through insurance helps provide immediate financial security and ensures peace of mind. In the UAE, blue-collar workers visit remittance houses on a regular basis, and this makes them our key target audience.”
Moosa Manjra, CEO of Hello Paisa, said: “Our customers are amongst the most vulnerable segments of society, and stand to reap significant benefits from this new offering. All residents who send money home via Hello Paisa will now automatically get a free personal accident cover. Digitalisation has enabled instant and easy access across sectors, and we seek to leverage it to improve our customers’ lives. We are proud to partner with Democrance and AXA to bring this innovative service to the region.” Globally, remitted funds amounted to US$689 billion in 2018 and were estimated to reach US$715 billion in 2019. Sending remittances home is a common practice especially amongst low-income residents, and forms the backbone of livelihoods and the entire economies outside the region.
Democrance, founded in 2015, is an insurance technology startup with a mission to enable partnerships that make insurance accessible and affordable for all segments of society. We have created a digital platform that brings together key industries – insurance, telecommunications and money transfer organisations. By forging new partnerships, we unlock new markets for businesses whilst creating social value for populations that have previously been excluded from the benefits and protection that insurance can provide. Through tapping into technology, we aim to restore the original purpose of insurance by providing mutual aid for those who needs it most, but can afford it least.