Across Southeast Asia, some 71 million micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are driving the region’s economic recovery. These organizations also comprise almost all businesses across the region. While they form the backbone of the region’s economy, MSMEs are often the ones who are vulnerable to adverse macroeconomic conditions and unexpected events such as fire, accidents, and damages.
With this in mind, regional insurtech Igloo, in partnership with GCash and Malayan, launched NegosyoCare, an insurance product specifically designed to protect MSMEs. Igloo believes that insurance products catered to MSMEs can support inclusive and sustainable economic growth and employment for the country and Filipinos.
“99.5% percent of all businesses in the Philippines are considered MSMEs. These sari-sari stores, carinderias, and water refilling stations, while small, greatly contribute to their communities and are essential to the growth of the economy. These businesses that make up nearly 40% of the GDP typically run on limited cash flow and limited financing and are most at risk from unforeseen events that disrupt operations,” said Mario Berta, Igloo’s Country Manager for the Philippines.
“We are delighted to have been able to work with Malayan on NegosyoCare to support MSMEs by offering them an affordable yet comprehensive insurance product that will enable them to continue to grow and thrive without having to worry if their businesses are protected when something unexpected happens,” he added.
Available via GCash’s GInsure marketplace, NegosyoCare premiums begin at P160 for one month coverage and up to P525 for one year coverage.
NegosyoCare provides coverage for accidental deaths, total permanent disability due to accident, and disablement or dismemberment due to accident for up to P50,000. Benefits also include medical reimbursement for accidents for up to P5,000, fire cash assistance for P10,000 and coverage for burglary and housebreaking for P10,000.
Importance of microinsurance for MSMEs
The Philippines is one of the countries where insurance penetration remains very low at 2% due to the relatively low financial literacy rate and insurance premiums regarded as being expensive.
A recent report by the Philippine Insurance Commission showed that microinsurance premiums–both production and contributions–grew by 15.5% in the fourth quarter of 2022. The growth was attributed to “the increasing awareness of the public of the importance of having affordable insurance products.”
“Offering microinsurance options is important because it provides MSMEs an affordable way to protect themselves and their businesses. The Philippines may score low on insurance penetration but they are scoring higher in microinsurance penetration–showing that if they have products that will cater to their needs and will not overburden them financially, they will consider it,” Mario explained. “It’s not only important to have affordable insurance products, people should also be able to easily access them. This is why our partnership with GCash is important: MSMEs will be able to protect their businesses for as low as P160 a month.”
NegosyoCare is another addition to the growing line of Igloo products currently available in the GCash Insure marketplace. In 2021, the Igloo and GCash partnership launched the first Online Shopping Insurance in the market followed by Mobile Insurance products, Pet Insurance in 2022 and the GCash Travel Master with COVID-19 in January 2023.