Occidental Insurance Co. Ltd is set to adopt an aggressive expansion strategy that will see the company expand into at least 24 counties in the next five years.
The insurer currently has 6 offices across the country, two in Nairobi, two in Mombasa, one in Kisumu and one in Nakuru.
Plans are already in the pipeline to open an office in Thika in the next six months.
In a statement sent to newsrooms on October 25, Mike Eldon, one of the company’s non-executive directors said that the acceleration in setting up offshoots is aimed at having a stronger presence in the country over the next half century.
This could also signal the company’s intention to counter the more established Jubilee, Kenindia, Britam, UAP and Jubilee insurance companies.
Occidental’s expansion, Mr Eldon says, is also in response for the growing demand for general insurance products around the country.
According to the non-executive director, the company’s confidence in the Kenyan market also influenced the decision to adopt a new corporate identity.
“The company embarked on its much more ambitious growth trajectory as part of the new strategy it launched in 2015. Since then a new energy has spread throughout the organisation, attracting young dynamic high-performers to complement its existing long-serving staff,” added Mr. Eldon.
Occidental says that the proliferation was inevitable as the company has in the last 30 years expanded from one branch writing Ksh11 million in premiums to Ksh2.6 billion as at the end of 2017.
“We see a lot of potential in the insurance sector as counties develop, and this is the driver of our expansion plans. To this end we decided to adopt our new look and feel to the Occidental brand, targeting these emerging markets and appealing to the savvy and younger customer base that is growing,” said Mr. Eldon.
The expansion could also be attributed to the firm’s strong financial performance in the past few years.
In 2017, the insurer’s premium figure represented a 28 per cent increase from the Ksh2.06 billion posted in 2016 above the 6.6 per cent industry growth rate.
The company’s asset base also grew by 15 per cent to stand at Ksh3.77 billion in 2017, up from Ksh3.28 billion in 2016.
Occidental is further looking to introduce new products to supplement its present portfolio of offerings that includes fire & perils, marine, liability, motor, travel insurance, engineering and theft.