#MEIRawards

3rd Middle East Insurance Industry Awards Salutes the Stars

Some 16 winners from six countries in the region were saluted at the 3rd Middle East Insurance Industry Awards (MIIA) Gala Dinner in Dubai on Tuesday, with MetLife Middle East & Africa emerging as a three-time winner of Life Insurance Company of the Year and Mr Omer Elamin, Group President, Orient Insurance honoured as the Insurance Personality of the Year.

The winners coming from Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE showed that the Awards was indeed truly regional, said Mr Sivam Subramaniam, Editor-in-Chief of Middle East Insurance Review, organiser of the Awards in conjunction with the DIFC, GAIF, FAIR and the MENA Insurance CEO Club (MICC). “The winners must stand tall to raise the bar and make an impact on the industry. They now carry the future of the Awards,” he added.

The MIIA, now in its 3rd year, is heralded as the premier awards of the MENA region with a clearly defined criteria and a transparent process served by a panel of 20 distinguished Judges. The judging panel, which was drawn from the domestic, regional and international insurance markets, had some 250 candidates to assess this year.

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Life Insurance Company of the Year

MetLife Middle East & Africa

As a third-time recipient of the Life Insurance Company of the Year award, MetLife continues to demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the industry and stay ahead of competition by providing exemplary customer service including enhancing its digital foundation.

With nearly 65 years of presence in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, MetLife takes a strong interest in the policy and regulatory environment for life insurance in MEA, actively engaging with the regulatory, government and trade association communities. MetLife has taken leadership positions in industry groups in Egypt, UAE, Turkey and other markets to drive industry engagement with governmental bodies.

MetLife has shown in-depth knowledge and understanding of the market by reaching different customer segments through a tailored multichannelled distribution platform of bancassurance, direct marketing, faceto- face, brokers and employee benefits. Service representatives continue servicing customers via a consolidated customer service unit, providing access to a uniform “one-stop-shop” experience. Other initiatives include ongoing in-depth market research into customer demographics and purchase behaviours via commissioned studies on market trends for ongoing product innovation, distribution and services.

As a customer-centric organisation, MetLife relies on its digital foundation to empower audiences with access to information they need at their own convenience. Amongst its innovative efforts, MetLife launched an enhanced online engagement digital platform “MyMetLife” in the UAE, Mobile App in Egypt and the UAE, and online sales platform via social media in Turkey after the successful launch of Facebook in 2014. MetLife has also formed Fraud and Abuse units to ensure better controls and procedures in place.

Among its corporate social responsibility activities, MetLife has partnered with Injaz Al-Arab to deliver financial literacy and work readiness skills to the youth in MEA; Special Olympics to engage with young people with intellectual disabilities in Turkey and the UAE; and Habitat for Humanity to build and renovate buildings in disadvantaged areas in Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt. MetLife also provides ongoing yearly support to the visually impaired children in Turkey and supports wellbeing and health related programmes in MEA.

In the last three years, MetLife MEA has achieved a sales CAGR of 17% and Operating Earnings CAGR of 20%. Today, MetLife employs over 1,300 employees in 11 countries in the MEA region. It also has over 1,800 face-toface agents, more than 60 partnering banks, access to over 14,000 preferred medical providers, nearly 9,000 corporate clients and over four million insured members.

The company’s efforts have received recognition, with Mr Julio Garcia- Villalon, Regional Head, MetLife MEA winning Forbes “Global Meets Local” Award in November 2015.

Sponsor’s Profile

Reinsurance Group of America, Incorporated (RGA) is a leader in the global life reinsurance industry with approximately $3 trillion of life reinsurance in force and assets of $50.4 billion. We are one of the largest life reinsurance companies in the world and the only global reinsurer to focus primarily on life and healthrelated reinsurance solutions.

RGA is known for our expertise in risk assessment and capital management, our innovative solutions, and our commitment to serving our clients.

RGA’s core products and services include individual life reinsurance, individual living benefits reinsurance, group reinsurance, health reinsurance, facultative underwriting, product development and financial reinsurance.

Headquartered in St Louis, Missouri, USA, RGA serves clients from operations in 27 countries. In Asia Pacific, RGA has subsidiary companies or offices in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan. RGA also provides reinsurance services to clients throughout the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

RGA is consistently recognised in cedant studies and surveys conducted by industry organisations. RGA was recently rated “Best Overall Life Reinsurer” in the 2015 Flaspöhler SurveyTM (Direct Writers Evaluate Reinsurers/ Life NA), and in 2015 RGA ranked #1 on NMG Consulting’s All Respondent Business Capability Index in Canada, Mexico, South Africa, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand, and in the Asia region. In addition, RGA was named Reinsurance Company of the Year at the 2015 Middle East Insurance Industry Awards.

www.rgare.com

Winners List

General Insurance Company of the Year

Orient Insurance PJSC

With consistent underwriting results over the years bearing testimony to its in-depth knowledge and understanding of the market, Orient emerges as a deserving winner of the General Insurance Company of the Year award.

Commencing operations on 1 January 1982, Orient has grown to become the second largest insurance company in the UAE in terms of GWP in 2015. Orient’s GWP registered impressive growth of nearly 30% from AED1.8 billion (US$490 million) in 2014 to AED2.3 billion in 2015.

Starting operations with a capital of AED5 million, equity at the end of 2015 stood at AED2.68 billion with a paid up capital of AED500 million. The equity has been built out of profit retention and ploughed back, without any further contribution from the shareholders despite having a consistent dividend policy of 20% every year. The company has registered over 30 years of continued profitability.

Orient deals with well-rated reinsurers. Its reinsurance treaty bouquet has been led by Swiss Re for more than 25 years. Judicious underwriting, sound risk selection, support of strong reinsurers, prudent claims and expense management with cautious investment policy and exemplary customer service have been the hallmark of its success over the years.

Orient offers both conventional and bespoke products for corporates and individuals. Apart from the traditional insurance covers, it plays a major role as an insurer in the growth of the regional economy through its innovative products like Motor Plus, Gold Plus, Hotel Plus, Life Insurance Plus, Credit Shield/Life and Strata Insurance. In addition, new products like Warranty & Indemnity Insurance, Cyber Liability and GAP were added to the product bouquet.

Its strategies are aligned to market dynamics as seen in its product offerings catering to different market requirements, and specialised services such as single window policy issuance / claims management services and electronic submission of claims documents. Consistent underwriting results over the years bear testimony to its in-depth knowledge and understanding of the market. The composition of the operating results reflects strongly the healthy balance it has between its technical and non-technical income.

In terms of responding to the needs of both customers and intermediaries, Orient’s emphasis on development of special products and quick turnaround in the matters of underwriting and claims result in a very high percentage of renewal retention and year-on-year growth. The company’s well established systems provide a strong platform that allows agility and ease of managing the ever increasing needs of customers and intermediaries.

The main principles in Orient’s approach to CSR are employee engagement, focused beneficiary as well as collaborating with credible third parties such as NGOs and corporates with aligned interests. The main areas of activities undertaken include health initiatives, disaster relief and rehabilitation programmes, insurance awareness and promotion of healthy living style.

Orient has secured credit ratings of “A Excellent” from A.M. Best and “A” from Standard & Poor’s, which is the highest combined rating in the region. It is accredited with ISO 9001 Quality Management Certification.

Sponsor’s Profile

ECHO RE obtained a composite reinsurance license in November 2008 in Zurich/ Switzerland.

It is licensed and regulated by FINMA, the SWISS Financial Market Supervisory Authority, and its office is in the heart of Zurich.

ECHO RE is a wholly owned subsidiary of DEVK, a very large German mutual insurance group headquartered in Cologne. DEVK is 130 years old and A+ rated (Outlook Stable) by both Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s (S&P).

ECHO RE itself holds A- Ratings (Stable Outlook) issued by both Fitch Ratings and S&P.

The Zurich-based reinsurer writes proportional and non-proportional treaty reinsurance in all major lines of business. In 2016 it started to write life reinsurance business as well. The company serves its clients through a team of dedicated and highly experienced reinsurance professionals who bring along vast experience and solid local market knowledge of the markets from which they write business.

In March 2016, ECHO RE’s paid-up capital was increased to US$103 million, while its solvency ratio stands at 291%. The company expects to earn approximately CHF95 million of premiums in 2016. Its portfolio is well-balanced between Asia (33%), Europe (30%) and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) with 29%, along with a young African and Latin American book representing 3% and 5% of ECHO RE’s portfolio.

78% of ECHO RE’s portfolio is proportional business and 22% is non-proportional. The largest LOB is Property (44%), followed by Motor, Engineering and Marine.

www.echore.ch

Winners List

Health Insurance Company of the Year

AXA Insurance (Gulf) BSC

As a responsible health insurer who has demonstrated leadership in product offerings and is committed to raise health awareness, AXA Gulf takes home the Health Insurance Company of the Year award for the second year running.

AXA Gulf’s health portfolio has grown over the last five years, from a total premium of US$221.1 million to $541.1 million premiums by the end of 2015. Today, healthcare represents 56% of AXA Gulf’s portfolio.

A double digit CAGR of 19.6% over five years in this growing healthcare environment is a reflection of AXA Gulf’s bespoke corporate solutions offering quality and sustainable healthcare programmes. Furthermore, high renewal retention rates of over 80% of GWP is an indication of AXA Gulf’s service-oriented approach of being available, attentive and reliable to its customers.

AXA Gulf offers a wide range of products to suit the needs of its retail, SME and corporate customers. At the retail level, AXA Gulf has continued to develop its Health Perfect Series, a range of seven healthcare schemes that offers a range of individual and family products with enhanced benefits. The Health Perfect Series consists of three international plans, two regional plans, and two local plans.

For the corporate segment, in collaboration with its stakeholders, the insurer continues to offer the “Thiqa TOP UP series” range of products and the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) Essential Benefits plan. AXA Gulf is one of the participating insurers approved by the DHA to offer health insurance coverage under Basic Benefit Plan. Currently, AXA Gulf services more than 510,000 members across five countries. At the SME level, it closed the year 2015 with 2,560 SME medical customers, with customer retention rate remaining stable at 65%.

In addition, AXA Gulf has continued to develop its infrastructure in order to improve distribution tools and methods for its direct salesforce as well as for selected intermediaries, targeting a consistent customer experience across distribution channels and countries, and ensuring a high retention rate.

In terms of service offerings, AXA Gulf has differentiated itself in the region by offering personalised services despite the digitalisation and automation of its operational procedures. A continuous focus on measuring the quality of services on a daily basis is adopted to ensure any trends or feedback from customers is identified quickly and acted upon. Through a dedicated complaints management system, AXA Gulf is able to identify the root causes of any customer dissatisfaction and put in place plans for service improvement.

The insurer has also launched a number of digital services such as claims submission, policy administrator online and eligibility, and approval systems for its customers.

In parallel with the rise of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), AXA Gulf’s role as a health insurer is changing: prevention is becoming more important, with increased use of technology. To this end, as a responsible health insurer, AXA Gulf embarked upon a number of medical initiatives in 2015/16 including rolling out programmes relating to health education and support, well-being and prevention, patient support and diabetes and breast cancer awareness campaigns.

Sponsor’s Profile

NEXtCARE is the leading “Third Party Administrator” (TPA) for the insurance industry in the GCC & MENA region. Since its establishment in 1999, the company specialises in providing complete health insurance management and administration services to insurers and other healthcare payers providing the perfect balance between the best customer service and the maximum cost optimisation in addition to compliance with regulators.

NEXtCARE operates the region’s first 24/7 medically staffed and multilingual call center for a direct and partner network allowing cashless access across various countries. With more than 3.2 million members under management, the company administers an annual portfolio of over US$850 million claims in value and five million claims in volume for more than 90 clients including insurance companies and self-funded schemes.

Being a member of the renowned Allianz Wordwide Partners, NEXtCARE creates and tailors health insurance management programmes covering Customer Service, Risk Assessment Solutions, Managed Care Services, Software Solutions and Added Services.

NEXtCARE employs 1,000+ employees located in its branches in the UAE, Lebanon, KSA, Egypt, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Morocco and Tunisia.

www.nextcarehealth.com

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Winners List

Family Takaful Company of the Year

Qatar Islamic Insurance Company

Qatar Islamic Insurance Company’s (QIIC’s) understanding of the market, innovative product offerings and strict commitment to Shariah compliance have helped it clinch the Family Takaful of the Year award.

In 2015, QIIC’s GWP amounted to QAR293 million (US$80.5 million), up 25% y-o-y and higher that 2014’s 11.3%. QIIC also maintained strong underwriting discipline that resulted in an underwriting balance of QAR91 million, up 30% from 2014.

Strict control measures introduced three years ago strengthened QIIC’s claims management which helped reduce its overall claim ratio to 45% in 2015, compared to 47% in 2014 and 59% in 2013.

Sound financial management over the years has resulted in excellent underwriting results and investment profits both in Policyholders’ Fund and Shareholders’ Fund, which coupled with QIIC’s equitable business approach, has resulted in declaration of 20% surplus consistently for the last seven years for distribution to policyholders, besides a hefty dividend payout to its shareholders.

The total declared surplus from the start of operations in 1995 till 2015 now stands at QAR267 million which even exceeds the paid-up capital. This helps in boosting the image of takaful in society as a system based on mutuality and fairness that not only rewards the shareholders in a good year, but also rewards the policyholders who invest in risk controls and has also set the leading professional standard for other takaful providers around the world.

QIIC is a major stakeholder in Pak-Qatar Family and General Takaful in Pakistan and has always encouraged and supported their efforts to use Microtakaful as a tool to provide financial security to the neediest ones. As part of its ongoing efforts to spread awareness of takaful protection, its CEO has also written a series of articles published in a widely circulated daily newspaper spreading awareness about risk management and how takaful can help corporates and individuals in managing risk in a Shariahcompliant manner. Additionally, it continues to undertake an awareness campaign through social media.

Shariah compliance has always been QIIC’s top priority and its Shariah board, headed by Shariah scholar Dr Ali Moehi El-din Al-Gura Daghi, has supervisory status and independently reports to the BOD. In addition, an in-house Shariah advisor vets all documents, including claims.

QIIC has always actively adopted international best practices and is an ISO 9001:2008 compliant organisation since 2012. Following increased focus on Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) globally, QIIC has established a dedicated Risk Management Department and has started implementing a robust ERM programme towards the end of 2015. QIIC has also established a Technical Committee that discusses and decides on complex technical matters.

Sponsor’s Profile

In-depth knowledge and understanding of the market

Hannover ReTakaful B.S.C. (c) (HRT) has over the years continued to show its unwavering commitment to the development and sustainability of the takaful and retakaful industry. The company’s commitment to the industry is evidenced in the fact that it was established as a fully capitalised legal entity at a time when Islamic Window Operations were common. The company conducts all facets of its business strictly in line with Shariah principles and also invests in Shariah-compliant products.


Responsive to both customer and intermediary needs

Hannover ReTakaful services from Bahrain over 200 partners globally. The company has contribution volumes in excess of US$200 million and an asset base of US$392 million. It is the largest retakaful operator worldwide with leading activities particularly in the GCC, Malaysia and North Africa. Product innovation, process optimisation and acceleration of business growth are all achieved keeping in mind the needs of the clients.


Provision of superior quality service

Hannover ReTakaful recognises the needs of its clients and stresses the cultivation of mutually beneficial profit and growth opportunities. The company considers relationship with its clients as long term partnership which is nurtured with transparency and a proactive approach. This is achieved with clear channels of communication working both ways, to ensure continuous flow of feedback for optimum results. The company does not engage in zero sum games, meaning it prefers to profit on the profits of its clients.

www.hannover-re.com

Winners List

General Takaful Company of the Year

Abu Dhabi National Takaful Company PSC

For its deep commitment to operational excellence, sound financial performance and product diversity and innovation, Abu Dhabi National Takaful Company is the winner of the General Takaful Company of the Year award.

Established in November 2003, Abu Dhabi National Takaful Company (ADNTC) operates in the UAE with servicing branches in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Dubai. The company has completed 12 full years of operations and achieved a CAGR of 32% in revenue and 61% in profitability from 2004-2015.

ADNTC’s focused approach and effective execution of its strategy in all areas of operations has resulted in it being recognised as one of the most progressive insurance companies in the UAE. In the UAE Insurance Market Report dated 8 December 2015, S&P ranked the company as the second best performing insurance company out of all listed insurers in the UAE based on a three-year performance assessment.

ADNTC saw its gross takaful contributions reach AED296.8 million (US$80.8 million) at the end of 2015, compared to AED295.3 million the previous year. Meanwhile, net profit reached AED41.5 million compared to AED35.7 million for the same period last year, representing an impressive increase of 16%.

The company has been successful in building a balanced and healthy portfolio with sustainable growth measures, with a low net loss ratio of 28.1% and underwriting combined ratio of 70.9% in 2015. It also showed strong overall earnings with shareholders’ fund reporting a five-year average return on equity of 18.2%.

A unique feature of ADNTC is a voluntary review mechanism to keep its operations under review by professionals of international repute. Such independent reviews allow its management to proactively adopt best international practices to ensure it is ready to meet any regulatory requirements and challenges.

For example, ADNTC has long been among a handful of companies that adopts international practice in:

  • Using 1/365 method for calculating net premium earned (NPE).
  • Incorporating all expenses associated with each underwriting profit centre in calculating the combined ratio. Hence, ADNTC does not follow the practice of stating unallocated expense outside the underwriting combined loss ratio.
  • ADNTC has a robust enterprise risk management (ERM) framework, and is among a handful of companies in the UAE that developed an in-house internal capital model to help in defining tolerance limits and determining capital adequacy for risk based decision making processes.

ADNTC believes in providing ethical products & services that caters to a broad cross section of individuals and corporates. Its business plan has set customer retention controls with renewal persistency measures in place, and it takes various measures to ensure retention ratios remain at satisfactory levels. ADNTC’s retention ratios across various lines of businesses, with the exception of motor business, are in the higher 90% range, while customer complaints are less than 10%.

ADNTC is assigned a financial strength rating of A– (excellent) and an issuer credit rating of “a–” by A.M. Best. It is the highest rating assigned to a takaful operator and reflects ADNTC’s solid risk-adjusted capitalisation, track record of excellent underwriting performance and enhanced enterprise risk management.

Sponsor’s Profile

Emirates Retakaful Limited (EmiratesRE) was incorporated at Dubai International Financial Centre in 2013, and is licensed and supervised by Dubai Financial Services Authority. EmiratesRE is taking forward the operation of Al Fajer Re which was established as a new and independent retakaful provider in Kuwait in 2008, before the business was subsequently restructured and transferred to the UAE.

EmiratesRE has built a diversified portfolio, and its Participants’ Fund has remained in surplus in the four years from 2012 to 2015. This has been achieved in the face of pressures from the increasingly competitive global reinsurance market and additional focus on ‘A” rated security as regulators become more stringent in their requirements.

EmiratesRE aims at bringing Shariahcompliant retakaful solutions backed by local capital and dedicated to the Islamic economy. EmiratesRE has a long term commitment to the Islamic insurance industry and has a US$500 million authorised capital.

www.emiratesre.com

Winners List

Educational & Training Initiative of the Year

Bahrain Institute of Banking and Finance

Recognised as the industry’s learning partner and a leading provider of quality education, the Bahrain Institute of Banking and Finance (BIBF) has emerged as the winner of the Educational & Training Initiative of the Year award.

The Centre for Insurance at BIBF has supplied the regional insurance industry with skilled, qualified human capital since its inception in 1981. Its training solutions have served the insurance market in over 14 countries and the reach of its insurance qualifications is evident in many of the accomplishments achieved over the past two decades.

In order to maintain its position as a market leader, the Centre for Insurance focuses on implementing international educational standards at a regional level. BIBF offers the industry a remarkable balance between localised applied theory and global best practices, along with internationally recognised professional qualifications in partnership with the world’s leading awarding bodies and associations.

BIBF provides a diversified set of training programmes that caters to different segments of the regional insurance market. A vast array of insurance topics are covered including property, engineering, transportation and liability insurance, in addition to advanced technical courses in underwriting, claims and risk management.

The offerings are divided into the Diploma Programmes which offers classroom-based training solutions, and the Professional Insurance Certificate and Diploma (PIC/PID) programmes which are attainable via distance-learning. The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) of UK accredits a majority of the modules for both sets of programmes. BIBF also offers training and development solutions to corporate clients.

BIBF currently holds an impressive 260 CII credits for its in-house courses, unmatched in the MENA region. BIBF also has strategic partnerships with US-based Life Management Association (LOMA), the Institutes, and America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), and is also a member of the Institute of Global Insurance Education (IGIE).

As the industry’s learning partner, BIBF takes great pride in the strength and longevity of the relationship it has with the markets it serves. It conducts a semi-annual training managers meeting, which is a forum for corporate customers to voice their concerns and training needs, the latest of which was conducted in January 2016. BIBF has also conducted scientific research to study the correlation between the completion of professional qualifications in the industry and career progression.

Furthermore, the Centre for Insurance has unparalleled strategic relationships with executives operating in the insurance industry across the MENA region. For over two decades, this network has provided an abundant supply of constructive feedback and served as an endless repository of ideas to develop different training initiatives. As a result of the working relationship with the market, BIBF’s insurance training programmes are dynamic and remain sensitive to the changing demands of the industry. For example, in response to the market’s increasing focus on personal insurances, BIBF introduced a new module on the topic in 2016.

Winners List

Innovation of the Year

AROPE Insurance

AROPE Insurance wins the Innovation of the Year award for its dedication to innovation and the development of “Allo…Hayete”, a life microinsurance plan exclusively via mobile SMS.

As one of the keen innovators in its field, AROPE Insurance knows the value of well-earned trust, and thus, constantly brings its customers the value they really need. After launching its multifunctional Mobile Application, a practical Mobile Website, and the first VISA Signature Credit Card for the insurance sector in 2014, AROPE offered the Lebanese mart its latest innovation in September 2015 “Allo… Hayete”, the first life microinsurance plan in Lebanon and the Middle East. This service is exclusively provided in Lebanon in cooperation with InMobiles and the two leading mobile network operators in Lebanon – Alfa and Touch.

“Allo…Hayete”, is an affordable airtime-based life microinsurance plan available for both Touch and Alfa pre- and post-paid subscribers, providing a convenient way to access a reasonable life protection plan directly through the user’s mobile phone. The service was specifically designed to meet a loved one’s protection needs in case of the subscriber’s death.

“Allo… Hayete” is also a paper-free product, eco-friendly and costeffective. No underwriting interference is required or accounting procedure is involved. Furthermore, subscribing to this programme is as easy as it can be and doesn’t require filling of any application form or document at AROPE Insurance. The service is simply kicked-off by sending a free SMS to subscribe.

With the aim to provide affordable and accessible cover, the cost of the service amounts to US$3/month, $0.7/week or $0.1/day for all ages. “Allo… Hayete” is an extremely flexible programme, as it allows its members to amend their payment frequency, change their beneficiary(ies) or even cancel their subscription anytime by just sending a free SMS.

Following the launch of “Allo…Hayete” service, AROPE combined it with an incentive programme to better promote it and to encourage people to subscribe. The programme consists of collecting points as the service is renewed automatically. An insured can also invite family members and friends to join “Allo…Hayete” and to benefit from the reward programme.

A dedicated monitoring tool has been developed to gain insight on the numbers subscribed, user behaviour, error detection, and other key findings. The monitoring tool is essential for the company to respond to any difficulties a user might be facing, and to give the best support possible for the query received. A special script has been written for AROPE 24/7 call centre for support around the clock.

In addition, a reminder campaign by SMS has also been launched to help people be actively engaged in the programme and invite them to stay covered for as long as possible. There are now more than 12,000 subscribers since its launch.

Sponsor’s Profile

Lloyd’s Dubai is a specialist underwriting platform in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), that opened in March 2015, providing specialist risk solutions for a number of insurance classes. Businesses from across the GCC and the wider MENA region are now able to access Lloyd’s specialist expertise locally with 13 Lloyd’s businesses underwriting in the DIFC, with nine of those co-located in the Lloyd’s office. These are; Talbot, Markel, Amlin, Liberty, Beazley, Argo Global, Starr Companies, Munich Re and Visionary. An additional four Lloyd’s businesses are located nearby in the DIFC; Antarah, Elseco, GR Risk & Partners and XL Catlin. In addition we also have two further Coverholder’s in the region, Trust Insurance Management in Bahrain and Fenchurch Faris in Jordan.

Lloyd’s are a leading provider of marine, energy and aviation risk providing reinsurance to the MENA region. The move to the DIFC brings us closer to our brokers and clients allowing us to build stronger relationships and deepen risk insight and understanding across the region. Underwriters on the Lloyd’s platform can work with brokers and cedants across regional markets to reinsure risks, with no access restrictions in place. Importantly, a policy issued by a Lloyd’s Dubai Service Company offers the same highly-rated security to its policyholders, as those issued by Lloyd’s Syndicates in London.

www.lloyds.com/dubai

Winners List

Service Provider of the Year

Milliman LLC

For its demonstration of leadership in the drive for greater professionalism and higher standards in serving the MENA insurance industry, Milliman LLC wins the Service Provider of the Year award.

Milliman Middle East’s unique structure of offering multiple consultancy services (life, health, casualty, pensions and risk management) all out of one practice is its greatest strength in order to best serve the needs of the industry, which often requires multi-disciplinary advice. It is also renowned for its ability to implement global actuarial standards in a manner suitable to local and regional requirements. One example is how it has played a proactive role in advising regulators to take a step-by-step approach for meeting requirements in the right spirit, rather than treat it as a tick-the-compliance-box exercise.

It also continues to be responsive to the needs of the market. Following the introduction of new regulations in the UAE, it organised workshops to discuss their impact and implications on the insurance industry. These saw the attendance of all insurance companies in the country. With 60 companies in the UAE market, Milliman Middle East is actively encouraging potential consolidation and engaging investors and companies to forge a common understanding. It sees itself as a catalyst for the betterment of the industry.

The service provider partners regulators to support the strengthening of the industry. In Saudi Arabia, it has worked with the regulator from adequate provisioning to now strengthening pricing basis for firms there, while in Oman, it has assisted the authorities to facilitate the enhancement of the maturity level of companies. It has also worked with non-insurance government organisations on effective insurance provision for their stakeholders.

In educating the industry at large to raise the bar of service provision quality in the region, Milliman Middle East has applied high actuarial standards and innovative solutions to meet client needs. These include using deterministic and stochastic approaches to reserving and pricing; using predictive analytical tools and offering in-house developed tools to the industry, including software, models and risk management platforms. It was a joint sponsor of the first ever Gulf Actuarial Society event to educate the regional actuarial community; and regularly provides thought leadership via speaking at industry events and article contributions to the press.

Milliman Middle East has established itself as a leading service provider in the region, with the highest number of actuaries specialised in each discipline, and continues to recruit across all lines of business.

Winners List

Corporate Risk Manager of the Year

Mr Adnan Abu Alhaija'a, Arab Orient Insurance | gig

Through his establishment of risk management frameworks in subsidiaries of the Trust Group, Mr Adnan Abu Alhaija’a has earned himself the Corporate Risk Manager of the Year award.

Mr Adnan Abu Alhaija’a, now of Arab Orient Insurance, had worked for Trust International Insurance Group in Amman, Jordan, from March 2011 to August 2016 as a Regional Risk Manager. During those years, he created and implemented enterprise risk management (ERM) frameworks in five main subsidiaries located in Jordan, Syria, Palestine, Yemen and Lebanon.

Across the Trust Group, he established and implemented an ERM programme using the ISO 31000 standard. He identified and developed group risk profiles for over 500 risks in his time at Trust. This was done through engaging over 110 employees across different departments.

Mr Abu Alhaija’a also worked at developing a business continuity and crisis management plan as part of the risk management frameworks, according to ISO 22301, which helped to boost the organisation’s resilience. This process involved stress testing IT infrastructure and taking into consideration political instability in the region. For the Yemen office, implementation of the plans resulted in actual savings and positive impact on cash flow and expense management.

He was instrumental in establishing a risk culture across the Trust subsidiaries, and conducted risk awareness sessions for over 160 employees across the group. Partnering third-party entities, he organised specific training sessions on civil defence, first aid, firefighting and evacuation. He also helped to develop different committees for business continuity, crisis management and health & safety. These initiatives helped to build awareness of risk management in general.

As a committed risk manager, Mr Abu Alhaija’a has gained multiple certifications to improve his experience in the field. These include the International Certificate in Risk Management (CIRM) from the Institute of Risk Management in London, a Certificate in Risk Management in Financial Services (SIRM) and ongoing studies towards a International Diploma in Risk Management. He co-founded the IRM Regional Group of Jordan & Palestine, which aims to encourage discussion of the risk profession and elevate its position regionally. He also conducted research on “ERM in Arab Insurance Companies – Practices & Challenges”, which covered over 100 companies from 18 Arab countries.

For his dedication in improving his expertise and in advancing risk management at the workplace and beyond to a wider region, Mr Abu Alhaija’a is a worthy winner of the Corporate Risk Manager of the Year award.

Sponsor’s Profile

AIG is the world’s leading insurance organisation, with more than 90 million customers worldwide -- a multinational footprint serving clients in over 200 countries and jurisdictions. With one of the industry’s most extensive ranges of products and services, deep claims expertise and excellent financial strength, AIG enables its personal and business insurance clients alike to manage risk with confidence. We have been insuring some of the world’s most complex risks for more than 95 years and today, some of the world’s largest companies and more than 20 million people have trusted us to help respond to some of the world’s biggest data breaches.

We participate on more than 70% of the world’s airline placements and are the underwriting and claims lead on roughly 30%.

Learning from the insights provided from our significant investments in technology and engineering, we’ve increased our Commercial Property per-risk capacity to $2.5 billion worldwide.

We’ve built a multinational footprint that spans 200 countries and jurisdictions.

We want to build partnerships, not just make relationships with clients. We will continue to learn, work, and innovate together with each other, and our clients, to solve emerging challenges and deliver solutions that work. We will continue to arm clients with best-in-class knowledge, training, consultative solutions, and claims assistance to solve their unique challenges, through partnerships with leading legal firms, mediators, investigators, forensic specialists, crisis communications practitioners, and industry experts.

www.aig.ae

Winners List

TPA of the Year

NEXtCARE

With a strong focus on its core competencies that include innovative technologies and customer-centric services, NEXtCARE is a worthy winner of the Third-Party Administrator (TPA) of the Year.

Established in 1999, the name NEXtCARE has become a byword for TPA in the Middle East.

Being a member of the renowned Allianz Worldwide Partners, the international leader in insurance and assistance services, NEXtCARE benefits from applying international standards of business management through embracing the stringent mandates of compliance and code of ethics.

NEXtCARE acts as the industry meeting point whereby it actively engages in forums and discussions by connecting key influencers – regulators, payers, providers, employers and insured members – to ensure engagement and sustainability.

The company provides full regulatory support ensuring compliance with over 160 regulatory mandates for all its payers and manages electronic claims environment through a compliant proprietary system “TATSH” with multiple portal technologies for providers, payers, and patients.

NEXtCARE has been selected as the technological and administrative partner to manage Dubai Health Authority’s (DHA’s) SAADA programme, a health insurance scheme to include mandatory preventive health cover for all in the emirate. Other key achievements in 2015 include posting doubledigit growth of over 15% y-o-y on all aspects of business on a CAGR basis, and expanding into new geographical areas such as Tunisia and Morocco, as well as continued rolling out its provider portal, PULSE, with more than 80% of network claims being submitted.

NEXtCARE offers expertise in product design as well as turnkey solutions to its local partners. Insurance procurement reinforces efficiency and cost optimisation through ongoing governance of the contractual relationship and negotiation with healthcare providers by utilising real-time dashboards, scorecards, and close monitoring.

With a solid infrastructure in place and technological innovation and development, NEXtCARE provides tailor-made, managed care solutions to help its customers manage medical expenditures, ease administrative burdens, and promote member satisfaction for their healthcare plans.

In an effort to combat fraud, waste and abuse, NEXtCARE constantly reviews provider adherence to contractual obligations. Ongoing processes that help eliminate potential abuse and fraud incidents include trend analysis, mystery shopping campaigns, data mining, site visits and medical records inspection.

NEXtCARE believes that wellness and prevention programmes are the means to reducing claims, and hence costs. It takes effort to help its members maintain good health through programmes designed to encourage preventive care, to reduce the incidence and impact of lifestyle diseases.

Initiatives aim to raise awareness include partnerships with Governments (SAADA Programme by DHA) and wellness campaigns through its social media channels.

NEXtCARE also believes in employees wellness and undertakes regular in-house activities promoting fitness and wellness. As a result, its Employee Engagement Index increased to 80% in 2015 from 68% in 2014.

Sponsor’s Profile

The National Health Insurance Company – Daman is the region’s leading specialised health insurer, providing comprehensive health insurance solutions to more than 2.8 million members in the UAE.

Daman is a public joint-stock company that is 80% owned by the Abu Dhabi Government with the remaining 20% owned by Munich Re. The company is backed by the reliable support of the Abu Dhabi Government and its strategic partner, Munich Re, one of the world’s leading reinsurers, plays an important role as both reinsurer and a valuable source for knowledge transfer.

Headquartered in Abu Dhabi and established in 2006, Daman offers a range of health insurance plans for both individuals and organisations and exclusively manages the Government’s health programme – Thiqa – for UAE Nationals and Abu Dhabi Basic Plan – for low income expatriates. Members enjoy access to the largest healthcare providers’ network in the UAE and an extensive international network of over 45 countries.

www.damanhealth.ae

Winners List

Law Firm of the Year

Clyde & Co

For its outstanding scale and expertise with over three decades of experience in the Middle East, Clyde & Co has clinched the Law Firm of the Year award.

Clyde & Co established its first office in the UAE in 1989, following many years of regional client involvement. Today, it counts over 160 legal staff in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Doha and Riyadh. It is the largest insurance practice in the region and commands in-depth understanding of legal, commercial and regulatory issues in the sector.

With its commitment to education and professional development, Clyde & Co is active in hosting seminars and training programmes for its insurance clients and speaks regularly at regional events. As an active participant in industry committees, it provided legal advice in facilitating the recentlyformed Confidential Life Insurance Middle East Forum (CLIME+F), an initiative set up by the leading UAE life insurers.

Together with ratings agency Moody’s and the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Authority, it contributed to the latest Guide to Insurance, Reinsurance and Captives in the DIFC, which provides a comprehensive overview of the DIFC landscape and how insurance market participants can set up and operate in the Centre. It has also provided consultancy to regional regulators on regulatory reform and benchmarking.

Last year, Clyde & Co launched Gulf Recoveries, which specialises in providing subrogated insurance claim recoveries on a no-win, no-fee basis to the Middle Eastern market. The company was formed in response to industry demand in the region for a value-driven service to insurers in an often overlooked area. This responsiveness is a demonstration of Clyde & Co’s service flexibility. The client-friendly interactive software developed for Gulf Recoveries is also being extended to cover other volume based claims practices within the firm.

At a time when competition is increasing and insurers have more power to demand flexibility and “value for money”, innovative pricing is a key component of its offering to clients – Clyde & Co offers an advisory retainer for those who prefer more certainty, in addition to the usual fixed fee, volume discount and hourly rate structures.

Clyde & Co also undertakes pro bono work in acting as a legal counsel for the DIFC Insurance Association, a special needs school in the UAE and through its other marine sector involvement in providing legal advice to Mission to Seafarers in the UAE.

Winners List

Broker of the Year

Gras Savoye Egypte WTW

For its customer responsiveness and deep understanding of the market, Gras Savoye Egypte WTW is honoured with the Broker of the Year award.

Gras Savoye Egypte is a Willis Towers Watson company. In 2009, Gras Savoye Conseil obtained the license to operate as an insurance broker in Egypt under the name of Gras Savoye Egypte. Since then, the insurance broker has expanded into offices in Jordan, Libya and Kuwait. In Egypt, it has four offices in Cairo, Alexandria, Luxor and Suez.

Gras Savoye Egypte WTW prides itself on taking customer responsiveness as a priority and creating practical and innovative solutions to meet the needs of its clientele. It was the first broker in Egypt to use digital marketing techniques and social media to raise insurance awareness among individuals, and to generate leads for retail insurance products. It was also a pioneer amongst Egyptian brokers in launching a mobile application to better engage with customers.

Education and developing the professions of the broker/insurer community are also a priority for Gras Savoye Egypte WTW. To better serve bank customers, it conducted a training session for 120 bank employees to guide them on the right requirements covering the associated risks within every industry. It also created a checklist for selecting insurers for banks. It organised a renewable energy seminar under the patronage of the Executive Chairman of Egypt’s renewable energy authority.

The broker takes upskilling of its own staff seriously with its yearly training budget of EGP200,000 (US$22,528), sending them for courses in English language and personal skills, and also sponsoring them for chartered insurance institute courses so that they can be certified. To secure talent, Gras Savoye Egypte WTW has a programme for hiring graduates from international universities in Egypt.

Gras Savoye Egypte WTW’s strong financials stand testament to its steady performance and customer-centric measures. During the qualifying period, it had revenue of EGP40.1 million and net profit of about EGP6.2 million, counting about 520 corporate clients. It has succeeded in maintaining a growth rate of 25% in terms of clients and gross premiums over the last five years, and is truly a strong contributor to the Middle East market.

Winners List

Reinsurance Broker of the Year

UIB (DIFC) Ltd

For its commitment and dedication in upholding the highest standards of market practice and providing high-quality services to the industry, UIB (DIFC) is a deserving winner of the Reinsurance Broker of the Year award.

From roots set in Lebanon in the 1950s by the late Jad G Kabban, its founder and the first insurance broker in the Middle East, UIB has gained in-depth knowledge and understanding of the regional and international markets over an operational period in excess of 60 years, 29 of which as a Lloyd’s broker now trading with clients in more than 90 countries.

UIB (DIFC) Ltd was the first fully-fledged and fully transactional reinsurance broker to operate out of the DIFC nearly a decade ago. It maintains one of the highest solvency ratios and significantly exceeds DFSA solvency requirements by a multiple of 2.5. Furthermore, UIB has zero debt and a rock solid balance sheet.

In addition, UIB fervently adheres to the London market’s standards of practice of segregating “client monies” from its own corporate funds throughout its global operations even when local regulations do not require the same. By year-end 2015, its DIFC operation’s revenue had grown by 680% from a start-up in 2007.

UIB’s executives and brokers not only understand the dynamics of the markets but are often actively engaged in constructively influencing and shaping the future direction of the markets in which it operates.

As a long-term partner to its client, UIB has also focused its expertise on trading with clients in emerging markets and has responded to all their needs, within the confines of strict adherence to and in compliance with all DIFC/UAE/UK/EU/UN directives.

UIB believes in “innovation through expertise”. This was amply demonstrated through the market research and product development of Non- Damage Political Violence Business Interruption cover designed specifically for the tourism industry and then adapted to other applications, and selffunded “Medical Well Being” Insurance Stop Loss programme which goes beyond conventional medical insurance.

UIB designed a hybrid Life & Key Man insurance product to cater to special SME risks which could affect business continuity in the GCC. It also developed its own CAT models for a number of North African markets which enabled it to better serve its ceding company clients.

Additionally, UIB actively encourages, promotes and supports the professional development of its staff. As an example, all placing brokers within UIB (DIFC) Ltd are at least ACII or similarly qualified, with several team members being FCII qualified or holding graduate or post-graduate university degrees.

Winners List

Retakaful Company of the Year

Africa Retakaful

For its stellar reputation and excellent service in supporting the needs of takaful operators in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, Africa Retakaful is the deserving winner of the Retakaful Company of the Year award.

Africa Retakaful was created in January 2011 to provide genuine retakaful products to satisfy the needs of a growing pool of takaful providers. Since that time, Africa Retakaful has acquired respect for its reputation in the industry as providing a sound Shariahcompliant proposition.

Despite Africa Retakaful being only five years old, it has had a headstart through the accumulated experience of its parent entity Africa Re, leveraging the resources and connections available to ensure better outreach and a high level of service to clients.

Africa Retakaful is now the leading retakaful operator in the whole of Africa, with the company leading most of the takaful operators in the continent. It also plays an important role outside the continent as a Shariahcompliant international player, and participates in most of the outward programmes of takaful operators, especially in Africa and the Middle East, as well as in many other countries in Asia.

One of its main targets since establishment is to accelerate the development of takaful awareness. In that regard, the company has conducted many takaful seminars and workshops for its partners, in addition to participating actively in international seminars and conferences.

Africa Retakaful also participates actively as a member of several international takaful bodies such as GTG, ICMIF, and IFTIT.

Africa Retakaful has shown steady growth over the years, due to its strong foundation having acquired the existing takaful portfolio of its parent company. That process also includes full separation of the takaful portfolio, accounts, and funds, with a complete structure with respect to Board of Directors, and Shariah supervisory boards and a dedicated retakaful team.

Africa Retakaful adopts the Wakala model for the management of the operation and technical portfolio of the participants. And the Wakala fees are considered to be the actual cost of the management, and not to be loaded with any amount out of the actual and necessary cost of operation.

As for the management of the investment of the participant’s funds, Africa Retakaful adopts the Mudarabah model where it gets a percentage of the net achieved income.

Winners List

Reinsurance Company of the Year

RGA Reinsurance Company Middle East

RGA Middle East is honoured with the Reinsurance Company of the Year award for its “next door” local approach and deep understanding of the region’s needs.

On the back of regulatory reforms, an ongoing shift towards a more diversified economy, changes in social welfare programmes and compulsory health insurance, RGA Middle East has seen a CAGR of 39% since 2011, with treaties in the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and Egypt.

RGA Middle East sees a high treaty renewal ratio of 85% y-o-y. Its success is driven by strong underwriting discipline and a focus on the bottom line.

It engages in regional research and analytics, collaborating with the DIFC IA and Towers Watson to develop the first true mortality study and a life market survey for GCC countries respectively. It has achieved a number of firsts when introducing some 20 customised life and health products. These include the first locally developed and white-labelled international health plan that provides a worldwide cover and indemnifies on actuals. It also offers microinsurance for microfinance providers in Egypt and a first-ofits- kind individual life insurance product for the region, which involves complex financial support for cedants and distribution partners providing relief to ceding companies that have to bear the pressure of high front-end annual commissions.

RGA Middle East also does its part to promote education and development of the insurance community regionally. It regularly speaks at industry events not just in the Middle East but also beyond. Being active in customer and partner engagement, it conducts an annual gathering of insurance CEOs and has organised workshops for underwriters, cedants and partners. It initiated and launched the first insurance medicine forum in the region for doctors working in the insurance industry.

The reinsurer has also demonstrated innovativeness in launching RGA Central, an e-underwriting and risk management tool that provides cedants access to useful resources, while RGA Claims Online is a web-based learning module that serves claims adjudicators.

As a socially responsible company, RGA Middle East is an active promoter of Dubai as a destination for health tourism, given its firm belief in Dubai’s strong healthcare system. It organised its first Annual Life and Health Seminar, attended by delegates across the GCC and will continue supporting health tourism in the future.

From an offshore startup which began operations on a clean slate in 2010, RGA Middle East has come a long way to be a reinsurer next door, with a mere 14 full-time employees contributing more than their numbers’ worth in the regional insurance industry.

Winners List

Personality of the Year

Mr Omer Elamin,Orient Insurance PJSC

For his sound track record in management, continuous leadership in the industry and mentorship of numerous insurance leaders in the Arab World, Mr Omer Elamin is the deserving winner of the Personality of the Year award.

Mr Omer Elamin is the Group President of Orient Insurance, a leading insurer in the UAE with a paid up capital of AED500 million, and a total staff strength of over 1,200 across seven countries.

Mr Elamin joined the company in 1982 and went on to become its Managing Director in 1992. His 24-year tenure as the head of the Orient Insurance group qualifies Mr Elamin as the longest serving CEO in the region’s insurance industry.

Under his stellar leadership, Orient grew from strength to strength across the entire gamut of insurance operations. The company became the second largest insurer in UAE in 2015 with a premium of AED2.3 billion, registering an impressive growth of 30% over the previous year.

Orient has been one the most profitable insurers in the region over the years. Starting out with a capital of AED5 million, today it has reached an equity of AED2.68 billion and AED500 million in paid up capital. Mr Elamin achieved these impressive figures only through profit retention and ploughing it back, without the shareholders ever having to contribute anything beyond the AED5 million they initially provided.

Besides, the shareholders are provided a consistent dividend of 20% every year, and the company has made profits every single year during his tenure. And Orient’s premium growth in the last 10 years has consistently outperformed the market

Under Mr Elamin’s leadership, the company has secured ratings of “A (Excellent)” from A.M. Best and “A” from S&P, the highest combined ratings for any listed company in the UAE.

Orient’s success over the years bears testimony to Mr Elamin’s insurance market acumen and knowledge. He has also promoted the image and enhanced the reputation of the insurance industry to the wider community, including lobbying the government. As a technical advisor to many committees, Mr Elamin has demonstrated his in-depth knowledge in the evolution of the insurance market in the UAE. He has chaired many technical sessions, and has been instrumental in bringing about many key reforms in the insurance sector.

Following the huge Address Hotel fire claim in Dubai on New Year’s Eve, Mr Elamin convened a market meeting of all the insurers in the UAE together with the major reinsurers. The recent spate of fires had raised concerns on the pricing of policies for buildings using cladding. Through this well-attended meeting, the industry was able to come to an agreement on the rating that will be used for such risks. The successful outcome is bound to have a far reaching benefit for the industry as a whole in bringing the levels of rating closer to technical levels.

Mr Elamin also actively nurtures the next generation of leaders in the industry. Succession planning has been a key corner stone at Orient, where each senior management position has at least one successor that has been identified, groomed and mentored.

Aside from his role at Orient Insurance, Mr Elamin is the Advisory Board Member for Al Futtaim Willis, UAE and Al Futtaim Finance, UAE. He also currently serves as the Chairman of the UAE Nuclear Pool.

Winners List

Stand up and be counted

There are awards galore. But the Middle East Insurance Industry Awards (MIIA) is unique and distinctive. The market has heralded the Awards for its transparent process, clearly defined parameters and a distinguished panel of Judges drawn from the industry, plus it is independently audited. The MIIA, co-branded with the DIFC and supported by GAIF and FAIR, has come to be seen as the hallmark of all awards in the region.

This is the third in the series, and we are making some changes to ensure that the MIIA reaches out to the maximum number of players in the market while ensuring a totally level playing field for all. This year, we will insist on having a closer focus on the efforts by each nominee to serve the local markets and industry better. To enable a greater cross-section of participation, we are also introducing a rule that each company can only take part in one category, with the only exception being made to licensed composites.

Given the tough times this year, we expect even more exciting entries as misery draws out the greater creativity in fellow men, so said the old bard. But seriously, businesses are all focussed on spending less and getting better results. This is the very essence of the song of efficiency which should see more active players try to be the best they can be. So I invite all of you to take part if you have a story to tell. And remember, self-nominations are allowed in the corporate world.

In these tough times and the greater risks faced, the good insurers must stand up and be counted. The world needs your big strong shoulders to feel protected. So flex them with the first step in sending your nominations by 15 June 2016 and addressing the criteria set.

I must salute the esteemed panel of experts and heavyweights who have agreed to serve on the Judging Panel – some 21 of them. It is the very integrity of the Judges that lends credence to the Awards. I must thank the sponsors who have kept their faith with us too as awards such as these cannot function without the commitment of the sponsors to support excellence.

I look forward to saluting the winners on 8 November 2016 at the Gala Awards Presentation Dinner, to be held in conjunction with the Dubai Rendezvous. The best is yet to be. But the journey has begun.

Sivam Subramaniam
Editor-in-Chief, Asia Insurance Review & Middle East Insurance Review

 

Life Insurance Company of the Year

For demonstrating market leadership through innovation in products or practices, responsiveness to customers and intermediaries, and initiatives to boost the image of insurance in society and narrow the protection and savings gaps, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Setting leading professional standards for other insurers to be measured against;
  • Demonstrating in-depth knowledge and understanding of the markets it operates in;
  • Responsiveness to the needs of both customers and intermediaries;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Innovation in products and procedures;
    • Transparency in the selling process;
    • Exemplary customer service;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management; and
    • Boosting the image of insurance in society.

Reinsurance Group of America, Incorporated is a leader in the global life reinsurance industry with approximately $3 trillion of life reinsurance in force and assets of $50.4 billion. We are one of the largest life reinsurance companies in the world and the only global reinsurer to focus primarily on life and healthrelated reinsurance solutions.

RGA is known for our expertise in risk assessment and capital management, our innovative solutions, and our commitment to serving our clients.

RGA’s core products and services include individual life reinsurance, individual living benefits reinsurance, group reinsurance, health reinsurance, facultative underwriting, product development and financial reinsurance.

Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A., RGA serves clients from operations in 27 countries. In Asia Pacific, RGA has subsidiary companies or offices in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan. RGA also provides reinsurance services to clients throughout the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

RGA is consistently recognized in cedant studies and surveys conducted by industry organizations. RGA was recently rated “Best Overall Life Reinsurer” in the 2015 Flaspöhler SurveyTM (Direct Writers Evaluate Reinsurers/Life N.A.), and in 2015 RGA ranked #1 on NMG Consulting’s All Respondent Business Capability Index in Canada, Mexico, South Africa, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand, and in the Asia region. In addition, RGA was named Reinsurance Company of the Year at the 2015 Middle East Insurance Industry Awards.

www.rgare.com

General Insurance Company of the Year

For demonstrating market leadership through innovation in products or practices, responsiveness to end users and intermediaries, and initiatives to boost the image of insurance in society and narrow the protection gap, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Setting leading professional standards that other insurers will be measured against;
  • Offering an extensive range of products and services catering to the needs of both corporate and individual clients;
  • Is a partner and adviser to corporate clients in adapting to the changing risk landscape;
  • Demonstrating in-depth knowledge and understanding of the markets it operates in, through its strategy;
  • Responsiveness to the needs of both customers and intermediaries;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Innovation in products and procedures;
    • Transparency in the selling process;
    • Exemplary customer service;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management; and
    • Boosting the image of insurance in society.

ECHO RE obtained a general reinsurance license in November 2008 in Zurich/ Switzerland.

It is licensed and regulated by FINMA, the SWISS Financial Market Supervisory Authority) and its office is in the heart of Zurich.

ECHO RE is a wholly owned subsidiary of DEVK, a very large German mutual insurance group headquartered in Cologne. DEVK is 130 years old and A+ rated (Outlook Stable) by both Fitch Ratings and S&P. ECHO RE itself holds A- Ratings (Stable Outlook) issued by both Fitch Ratings and Standard&Poor’s (S&P).

The Zurich-based reinsurer writes proportional and non-proportional treaty reinsurance in all major lines of business. The company serves its clients through a team of dedicated and highly experienced reinsurance professionals who bring along vast experience and solid local market knowledge of the markets from which they write business.

In March 2016, ECHO RE’s paid-up capital was increased to USD100 Mio. and its Solvency Ratio is 291%. The company expects to earn approx. CHF95 Mio. premium in 2016. Its portfolio is well balanced between Asia (33%), Europe (31%) and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) with 30% along with a young African and Latin American book representing 2% and 4% of Echo Re’s portfolio.

75% of ECHO RE’s portfolio is proportional business and 25% is nonproportional. The largest LOB is Property (44%), followed by Motor, Engineering and Marine.

www.echore.ch

Health Insurance Company of the Year

For demonstrating market leadership through innovation in products and services which facilitate an improvement in both the curative and preventative aspects of healthcare management for the population, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Setting leading professional standards against which other health insurers should be measured;
  • Demonstrating in-depth knowledge and understanding of the healthcare funding environment in the markets in which it operates;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Strong underwriting discipline;
    • Innovation in products;
    • Incorporating wellness and preventative schemes within product design;
    • Demonstrating exemplary customer service;
    • Showing evidence of sustainable business growth and profitability in its health insurance portfolio;
    • Showing evidence of active promotion of the importance of health insurance as a means of protecting the population against ill health;
    • Supporting wellness and disease management programmes through external corporate social initiatives;
    • Providing access to healthcare provider networks that meet the diverse requirements of insured members in terms of affordability and accessibility;
    • Harnessing technology to benefit health outcomes of insured members and achieve financial and operational efficiencies for the insurer; and
    • Demonstrating a commitment to engage with regulators to both develop and comply with market regulations.

NEXtCARE is the leading “Third Party Administrator” (TPA) for the insurance industry in the GCC & MENA region. Since its establishment in 1999, the company specializes in providing complete health insurance management and administration services to insurers and other healthcare payers providing the perfect balance between the best customer service and the maximum cost optimization in addition to compliance with regulators.

NEXtCARE operates the region’s first 24/7 medically staffed and multilingual call center for a direct and partner network allowing cashless access across various countries. With more than 3 million members under management, the company administers an annual portfolio of over USD850 million claims in value and 5 million claims in volume for more than 90 clients including insurance companies and self-funded schemes.

Being a member of the renowned Allianz Wordwide Partners, NEXtCARE creates and tailors health insurance management programs covering Customer Service, Risk Assessment Solutions, Managed Care Services, Software Solutions and Added Services.

NEXtCARE employs around 850 employees located in its branches in the UAE, Lebanon, KSA, Egypt, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Morocco and Tunisia.

www.nextcarehealth.com

Family Takaful Company of the Year

For demonstrating market leadership through innovative, Shariah-compliant products or practices, responsiveness to customers and intermediaries, and initiatives to boost the image of takaful in the MENA region and narrow the protection and savings gaps, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Setting leading professional standards for other family takaful providers to be measured against;
  • Demonstrating in-depth knowledge and understanding of the MENA markets it operates in, through its strategies and operations;
  • Responsiveness to the needs of both customers and intermediaries;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised;
  • Strict Shariah compliance and Shariah governance;
  • Demonstrating activeness in microtakaful and reaching out to the needy; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Innovation in products;
    • Exemplary customer service;
    • Strong underwriting discipline;
    • Solid claims management;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound management; and
    • Boosting the image of takaful.

Hannover Re, with a gross premium of around EUR14 billion, is the third-largest reinsurer in the world. It transacts all lines of non-life and life and health reinsurance and is present on all continents with around 2,300 staff.

The rating agencies most relevant to the insurance industry have awarded Hannover Re very strong insurer financial strength ratings (Standard & Poor’s AA- “Very Strong”, stable outlook and A.M. Best A+ “Superior”, stable outlook).

Hannover Re is represented in the Middle East by its two units operating from Bahrain. Hannover ReTakaful B.S.C.(c) was established in 2006 to be the first fully Sharia compliant member of a major international reinsurance group. Hannover Re Bahrain Branch started operations in 2008 to cater to Arab World business.

Both units capitalize on group strategy and international strength as well as local and regional talent and expertise. Hannover ReTakaful B.S.C.(c) is an independently capitalized subsidiary of Hannover Re Group. It holds a standalone rating of A+ ”Strong” by Standard & Poor’s. Both units are run by a team of highly qualified staff with deep understanding of the Sharia aspects of retakaful and long technical expertise in reinsurance and the Middle East insurance markets. They underwrite all classes of life and non-life businesses and are considered the Hannover Re Group’s main center of competence for the Middle East.

www.hannover-re.com

General Takaful Company of the Year

For demonstrating market leadership through innovative, Shariah-compliant products or practices, responsiveness to end users and intermediaries, and initiatives to boost the image of takaful in the MENA region and narrow the protection gap, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Setting leading professional standards for other general takaful providers to be measured against;
  • Demonstrating in-depth knowledge and understanding of the MENA markets it operates in through its strategies and operations;
  • Responsiveness to the needs of both customers and intermediaries;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised;
  • Strict Shariah compliance and Shariah governance;
  • Demonstrating activeness in microtakaful and reaching out to the needy; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Strong underwriting discipline;
    • Innovation in products;
    • Exemplary customer service;
    • Solid claims management;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management; and
    • Boosting the image of takaful in society.

Al Fajer Re, founded in 2008 as one of the largest retakaful companies in the world and based in Kuwait was established by Dubai Group and Global Investment Bank with a view to support the growing takaful markets.

Al Fajer Re’s shareholders, being local companies and dedicated to the Islamic economy, however, did not lose their ultimate objective. They rather supported the company and the Islamic insurance industry during those difficult times.

In 2013, together with the company’s management, the shareholders followed HH Sheikh Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktom’s call to build the Islamic economy’s capital in Dubai and decided to set up in Dubai.

In 2013, Emirates Retakaful Limited (EmiratesRE) was incorporated at the Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai, for conducting activities of Effecting Contracts of Insurance & Carrying out Contracts of Insurance, under the supervision of Dubai Financial Services Authority.

EmiratesRE has an authorised capital of US$500 million and paid-up capital of US$120 million making it one of the most financially secured independent retakaful companies.

EmiratesRE aims at bringing Sharia’ah-compliant retakaful solutions backed by local capital dedicated to Islamic economy demonstrating a long-term commitment. All EmiratesRE’s products, services and investments are subject to independent supervision by a Shari’ah Supervisory Board to ensure they are in accordance with Shari’ah principles.

EmiratesRE’s retakaful products cover almost all Moslem economies having a client base from Indonesia to Sub-Saharan Africa.

www.emiratesre.com

Educational and Training Initiative of the Year

For the education/ training initiative during the qualifying period by a training institute, insurer, reinsurer, broking company or insurance advisory service which is original and demonstrates a deep understanding of the market and its needs, while enhancing the standards and professionalism of insurance executives.

Criteria:

  • Responsiveness to the market’s needs;
  • Providing leadership to the market in anticipating and providing educational needs;
  • Ease of access to the service offered;
  • Quality and originality of the initiative; and
  • Contributing to enhancing the professionalism and educational standards of executives in the industry.

Innovation of the Year

For the most innovative product or service introduced Sponsor during the qualifying period which has demonstrated responsiveness to customers’ needs, made a clear impact on business and contributed towards insurance growth in the MENA markets.

Criteria:

Outlining the objectives of your innovation, demonstrate the following:

  • Originality of product or service offered;
  • Significant impact on the market or the business;
  • Extent of innovation and research involved;
  • Improved customer engagement and personalisation;
  • Real change in strategy, service delivery and/ or operations;
  • Proof of how the innovation is serving the MENA markets it operates in; and
  • How the company has reduced complexity, thereby lowering costs and increasing ability to respond to change.

Lloyd’s Dubai opened in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) in 2015, giving Lloyd’s an underwriting base in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

With 12 Lloyd’s businesses present in the DIFC, 9 of whom are on the platform, Lloyd’s Dubai brings new and existing Lloyd’s businesses together, to jointly provide tailored reinsurance cover for a diverse range of specialist risks ranging from Marine, Energy, Financial Lines, Political Violence and Terrorism.

Underwriters on the Lloyd’s platform can work with brokers and cedants across regional markets to reinsure risks, with no access restrictions in place. Importantly, a policy issued by a Lloyd’s Dubai Service Company offers the same highly-rated security to its policyholders, as those issued by Lloyd’s Syndicates in London.

www.lloyds.com

Service Provider of the Year

For demonstrating leadership in providing efficient and effective services to insurers with clear and measurable results, helping them to focus on their core underwriting and customer service functions during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Providing services which respond to the needs of the market;
  • Innovation in services resulting in the broadening of the market;
  • Creating a benchmark of quality in service provision;
  • Service flexibility and efficiency that differentiate the provider; and
  • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management.

Corporate Risk Manager of the Year

For the individual who has shown leadership and effectiveness in enhancing the risk management in his corporation, non-profit organisation or government institution, and/ or contributed to the promotion of risk management in the MENA region for the period under review.

Criteria:

  • Creating or enhancing a risk management and/ or insurance programme in his entity;
  • Effective use of risk management in resolving a key challenge or loss containment for his entity, with proven results;
  • Developed an understanding of his entity’s risks to the operational or technical level;
  • Bringing risk management to the entity’s strategic decision-making processes;
  • Promotion of risk management as a philosophy and business discipline; and
  • Advancing in his risk management career, through professional activities such as certifications, risk association involvement and speaking engagements.

AIG’s world class insurance franchises are leaders in their categories and are continuing to improve their operating performance.

Commercial Insurance is a leading provider of insurance products and services for commercial and institutional customers. It includes one of the world’s most far-reaching property casualty networks, a leading mortgage guaranty insurer and an institutional retirement and savings business. Commercial Insurance offers a broad range of products to customers through a diversified, multichannel distribution network. Customers value Commercial Insurance’s strong capital position, extensive risk management and claims experience, and its ability to be a market leader in critical lines of insurance business.

  • Ranked among the top 10 most preferred commercial insurance carriers
  • #1 commercial insurer in the U.S., with an established and growing position in Latin America
  • Largest non-life insurer in the world by market capitalization

Consumer Insurance is a unique franchise that brings together a broad portfolio of retirement, life insurance and property casualty products offered through multiple distribution networks. It holds long-standing, leading market positions in many of its U.S. product lines, and its global footprint provides the opportunity to pursue international growth opportunities selectively in countries with attractive markets. With its strong capital position, customer-focused service, innovative product development capabilities and strong distribution relationships across multiple channels, Consumer Insurance is well positioned to provide clients with the products they need delivered through the channels they prefer.

  • Market-leading positions in:
    • Fixed Annuities: #1 provider of fixed-rate deferred annuity sales
    • Group Retirement: #2 in K-12 assets and #3 in 403(b) assets
    • Personal Insurance, U.S.: Private Client Group serves 40% of Forbes 400 Richest Americans
    • Personal Insurance, Japan: 2nd in Personal Accident with 20% market share; 4th in Personal Property with 13% market share

www.aig.ae

TPA of the Year

For demonstrating leadership in providing efficient and effective third-party administration services to help health insurers improve the health outcomes of their insured members whilst at the same time controlling claims costs for the insurers they represent, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • Providing efficient and cost-effective services which respond to the needs of the market, with clear and measurable results;
  • Clear evidence of harnessing technology and software solutions to create efficiencies in service levels;
  • Clear evidence of using software to improve patient safety in relation to drug safety checks and similar patient safety initiatives;
  • Capacity to handle business volumes without prejudice to service levels;
  • Evidence of specific programmes to detect and combat fraud, waste and abuse;
  • Facilitating wellness and preventative schemes within service offerings to insurers; and
  • Demonstrating a commitment to engage with regulators to both develop and comply with market regulations.

The National Health Insurance Company - Daman is the region’s leading specialised health insurer, providing comprehensive health insurance solutions to more than 2.8 million members in the UAE.

Daman is a public joint-stock company that is 80% owned by the Abu Dhabi Government with the remaining 20% owned by Munich Re. The company is backed by the reliable support of the Abu Dhabi Government and its strategic partner, Munich Re, one of the world’s leading reinsurers, plays an important role as both reinsurer and a valuable source for knowledge transfer.

Headquartered in Abu Dhabi and established in 2006, Daman offers a range of health insurance plans for both individuals and organisations and exclusively manages the Government’s health programme – Thiqa – for UAE Nationals and Abu Dhabi Basic Plan – for low income expatriates. Members enjoy access to the largest healthcare providers’ network in the UAE and an extensive international network of over 45 countries.

www.damanhealth.ae

Law Firm of the Year

For providing outstanding legal service to the MENA insurance industry during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of the insurance market through conducting research and publishing industry papers;
  • Commitment to education and professional development of the market;
  • Participation in industry committees and councils;
  • Service flexibility and efficiency;
  • Use of process and technology to ensure cost-efficient and quality service delivery to clients; and
  • Evidence of pro-bono work for industry.

Broker of the Year

For demonstrating leadership through innovation in services rendered to clients, adding significant value to the insurance process, boosting the image of the broking profession and demonstrating exceptional retention and business growth during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of the market;
  • Responsiveness to clients’ needs;
  • Innovation in risk management and other value-added services to clients;
  • Helping to develop new products in response to clients’ emerging needs;
  • Professionalism and transparency in dealing with clients;
  • Industry leadership in broking and customer services;
  • Boosting the image of the broking profession; and
  • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management.

Reinsurance Broker of the Year

For demonstrating leadership through innovation in services rendered to insurers and reinsurers, adding significant value to the reinsurance process in the course of generating new business, boosting the image of the profession, and demonstrating exceptional retention and business growth during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of the market;
  • Responsiveness to clients’ needs;
  • Innovation in risk management and other value-added services rendered;
  • Helping to develop new products in response to clients’ emerging needs;
  • Professionalism and transparency in dealing with clients;
  • Industry leadership in offering services to insurers;
  • Boosting the image of the profession; and
  • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management.

Retakaful Company of the Year

For demonstrating leadership in MENA’s (re)takaful industry through enhancing the stability and security of the industry, innovation in product offerings, thought leadership, boosting the image of the profession, exceptional growth and clear expertise in niche areas, and/ or promoting end-to-end Shariah compliance where possible, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of the market with published research and other value-added offerings to insurers;
  • Give instances and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised;
  • Responsiveness to cedants’ needs and providing assistance in product development, service enhancement and tapping into new markets;
  • Ability to adapt to changing needs and demands;
  • Offering superior service and security to clients and working with insurers and other stakeholders;
  • Sound corporate governance and disclosure;
  • Strict Shariah compliance and Shariah governance; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Strong underwriting discipline;
    • Innovation in products;
    • Provision of best quality service;
    • Solid claims management;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management; and
    • Boosting the image of takaful in society.

Reinsurance Company of the Year

For demonstrating leadership in MENA’s (re)insurance industry through enhancing the stability and security of the industry, innovation in product offerings, thought leadership, and boosting the image of the profession, during the qualifying period.

Criteria:

  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of the market with published research and other value-added offerings to insurers;
  • Give instance and evidence of what company is doing to serve the local markets it operates in;
  • Show proof of how global corporate practices have been localised;
  • Responsiveness to cedants’ needs and providing assistance in product development, service enhancement and tapping into new markets;
  • Ability to adapt to changing needs and demands;
  • Offering superior service and security to clients and working with insurers and other stakeholders;
  • Sound corporate governance and disclosure; and
  • Industry leadership as shown through:
    • Innovation in products;
    • Strong underwriting discipline;
    • Solid claims management;
    • Sustainable business growth through professionalism and sound financial management; and
    • Boosting the image of insurance in society.

Personality of the Year Award

For the person who has made the most outstanding individual contribution to the MENA insurance or reinsurance industry for the period under review

Criteria:

  • Demonstrating outstanding leadership qualities.
  • Demonstrated superior social and communication skills.
  • Promoted the image and enhanced the reputation of the insurance industry to the wider community including lobbying the government.
  • Shown in-depth knowledge and understanding of the market.
  • Influenced the development of insurance/reinsurance practices to enhance stability and growth in the market.
  • Embraced professional standards and actively worked towards boosting greater professionalism in the market.
  • Nurtured the next generation of leaders.
  • Abdul Khaliq R Khalil Abdul Khaliq R Khalil
    Secretary General, General Arab Insurance Federation (GAIF)
  • Dr Adel MounirDr Adel Mounir
    Secretary General, Federation of Afro-Asian Insurers & Reinsurers (FAIR)
  • Akshay RandevaAkshay Randeva
    Director, Strategic Initiatives & Development, Qatar Financial Centre Authority
  • Dr Bassel HindawiDr Bassel Hindawi
    Chairman/CEO, DIFC Insurance Association
  • Fareed LutfiFareed Lutfi
    Secretary General, Emirates Insurance Association
  • Omer Hassan ElaminOmer Hassan Elamin
    President, Orient Group
  • Christos Adamantiadis Christos Adamantiadis
    Chief Executive Officer, Oman Insurance Co
  • Hammam M Badr Hammam M Badr
    Chairman of the Board, ISKAN Insurance Company
  • Jason LightJason Light
    Chief Executive Officer, Emirates Insurance Company
  • Dr Michael BitzerDr Michael Bitzer
    Chief Executive Officer, National Health Insurance Company – Daman
  • Michael S JensenMichael S Jensen
    Managing Director MENA, AIG Property Casualty
  • Mohamed El DishishMohamed El Dishish
    Chief Executive Officer, Emirates Retakaful Ltd
  • Safder Jaffer Safder Jaffer
    Managing Director, Milliman
  • Wayne JonesWayne Jones
    Partner, Clyde & Co LLP
  • Yassir AlbaharnaYassir Albaharna
    Chief Executive Officer, Arab Insurance Group
  • Bernd Kohn Bernd Kohn
    Chief Executive, Middle East and Africa, Munich Re
  • Michael J MorrisseyMichael J Morrissey
    President & Chief Executive Officer, International Insurance Society
  • Dr Peter F HuggerDr Peter F Hugger
    Chief Executive Officer, Echo Reinsurance Limited
  • Dr Roger SellekDr Roger Sellek
    Chief Executive Officer, A.M.Best – EMEA & Asia Pacific
  • Dr Kai-Uwe SchanzDr Kai-Uwe Schanz
    Special Advisor, The Geneva Association

Are nominations free?

Yes. You don’t have to pay anything to nominate yourself or your client. There is absolutely no fee required to take part in the Awards, which are run as a CSR project to recognise and salute excellence in the insurance industry. 

Organising the Awards costs about US$250,000. Funding comes from table sales for the Awards Presentation Dinner, as well as sponsors who support the cause to boost standards and professionalism.

Nominated candidates are invited to attend the Presentation Dinner on a complimentary basis. While they are encouraged to buy tables to host their staff for a night of celebration and recognition, there is no obligation to do so.

Why take part in the Awards? What is unique about the Awards?

The Middle East Insurance Industry Awards are unique because the entire process  is fully transparent. It is fully audited, with a defined criteria, and it is served by a Panel of Judges who represent leading lights in the industry. No other Awards in the market can boast of such an open criteria.

A win in the Awards is a real victory with you being judged by your peers as the winner for that year. It is an Award that is highly coveted and respected.

We are better than the winner and yet we were not chosen.

The first question is: Was your company nominated? You cannot expect your competitors to nominate your company. That is why we allow self-nomination and it is your duty to ensure that your company is nominated and is part of the judging process. It is part of marketing and there should be no shame attached to self-nomination for your company.

Nominations are free and open to all. You don’t have to be a subscriber, an advertiser, a sponsor or a client of MEIR to be nominated or to win.

The winner is chosen by a Panel of Judges who represent a cross section of the industry including market leaders, association heads, and regulators regionally and internationally. The entire process is audited. But the first step is to get nominated.

Why did we not win? How did Company X win?

Judging is not a science but a perception of the views of the Judging Panel. So if you don’t win, do not take it personally. It was a majority view of the peers in your industry. Do take part next year with a different write up and a different focus. As there are 21 judges in the Panel, you can be assured there is no prejudice against any one company. The Judges vote according to their convictions and there is no rule against the big or small, or even that the prizes must be rotated within the countries in the region.

The winners each year are chosen based on the driving concerns of the day and the majority view of the Panel of Judges based on the write ups. As Judges are drawn from all over the region and internationally, their market intelligence will serve as the litmus test of the claims made in the write-ups.

Are the entries strictly confidential?

Yes, the entries are confidential. Other than sharing the material with the Judges who are required to destroy the write ups after the process, we do not publish them. The write-ups will also not be used in our editorials.

Why are only finalists announced?

To allow everyone to take part without fear of embarrassment, we adopt a positive approach where we will only announce the finalists.  The other nominations that don’t make it to the finals are never named. Nonetheless, the nominee is free to do his own marketing should he want to.

Why are the “nominators” not announced?

This is to prevent horse trading among the nominators and nominees.

Some nominations even come from regulators, past winners, or even enlightened competitors, as well from staff, clients or suppliers of the nominees. Some get nominated by the dozens. But once received, all nominations are treated on an equal plane by the Judges. Hence, the nominators or the number of nominations are not announced.  Everything depends on the write ups on Judging day.

Why are self-nominations allowed?

This is to make the system as fair as possible and to allow everyone who thinks his company is doing something exemplary to get a chance to be recognised. It is not limited to the more popular or the big playersetc. It is open to all - small and big.

It is naïve to expect competitors to nominate worthy candidates. Self-nomination is neutral.

Judging and conflicts

All judges are involved in rating and ranking the entries, except in categories where there is a conflict of interest, such as if their company is taking part in that category or if there is some cross holding between the Judge’s company and the candidate in that category.

We allow companies employing the Judges to take part as otherwise it will be penalising the Judges. But the “conflicts” rule ensures that Judges don’t vote in the categories their companies are taking part in.

It is the integrity of the Judges that underpin the Awards system. Judging is not based on consensus but on the Judges’ scoring of the write-ups in the first instance, and then ranking the finalists after the face-to-face meeting of each finalists on Judging Day.The Judges contribute their time and effort to this grueling process as their social service to the industry.

Did Award winners pay or sponsor to win?

No. The process is transparent and audited. Everything depends on the Judges’ selection and we have 21 judges to represent a cross section of views.

All companies can do is to influence the judges by an excellent and verifiable write up.

Can I take part in more than one category?

Yes, you can only if you are a composite company. Otherwise one company can only take part in one category.

As an example, a composite company can take part in both the "Life Insurance Company of the Year" and "General Insurance Company of the Year" but you cannot take part in say "Life Insurance Company of the Year" and "Employer of the Year".

Why are the results kept secret till the day of the Gala Dinner?

This is to add excitement and to ensure that all the finalists will attend the Dinner. And most Awards that are genuine do not announce the Winners until the very night of the presentation, like the Academy Awards.

When is the deadline for entries?

The deadline for entries and nominations is 15 June 2016.

Does the entry need to be in English?

Yes.

When and where will the results be announced?

The results will be announced at a Gala Dinner on 8 November 2016, held in Dubai in conjunction with the Dubai Rendezvous.

What will it cost to attend the awards dinner?

Nominated candidates are invited to attend the dinner on a complimentary basis. While they are encouraged to buy tables to host their staff for a night of celebration and recognition, there is no obligation to do so. Each table costs US$2,900.

Life Insurance Company of the Year

MetLife

General Insurance Company of the Year

AXA Insurance (Gulf)

Health Insurance Company of the Year

AXA Insurance (Gulf)

Family Takaful Company of the Year

SALAMA Family Takaful

General Takaful Company of the Year

Al Madina Takaful

Educational & Training Initiative of the Year

The Arab Insurance Institute

Innovation of the Year

National Health Insurance Co - Daman

Service Provider of the Year

Milliman

Corporate Risk Manager of the Year

Mr Bob Sehmi, Dana Gas

TPA of the Year

GlobeMed Group

Law Firm of the Year

Holman Fenwick Willan Middle East LLP

Broker of the Year

Nexus Insurance Brokers

Reinsurance Broker of the Year

Chedid Re

Retakaful Company of the Year

Hannover ReTakaful

Reinsurance Company of the Year

RGA Reinsurance Company Middle East Limited

Lifetime Achievement Award

Mr Abdul Khaliq R Khalil

 

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