Convincing blend of innovation and tradition allow Zurich to score a big win in Australia

A big deal Down Under brings cutting-edge coverage and services to energy workers.

When Zurich was vying for the mandate to provide coverage for the 47,000 members of Australian pension fund Energy Super, it was counting on its innovative use of artificial intelligence and a fresh approach to more traditional benefits and services to help win the account.

And, that blend of cutting-edge technological expertise used in claims services and a long commitment to quality rehabilitation and wellness programs was a big reason why the $8 billion (AUS) superannuation fund recently chose Zurich to cover its members.

Zurich will offer the fund’s members – who work in the energy industry in Queensland – life insurance, coverage for total and permanent disabilities and income protection for those who suffer temporary disabilities.

Energy Super’s CEO Robyn Petrou said in announcing the deal that it fits with the fund’s focus on innovation as it continues to expand its member base. “We are the fund of choice for the energy industry,” she said, “so our insurance offering has to be affordable, comprehensive and responsive to meet the needs of people who work in higher-risk occupations.”

For Zurich, it’s not just a big deal, but a first since completing the acquisition of OnePath Life from ANZ in June. Together with OnePath, Zurich now serves more than 2 million customers in Australia.

Gerard Kerr, Head of OnePath Proposition and Group Insurance, said Zurich’s claims service, innovative rehabilitation and wellness offering, and “our ability to develop deep insights from claims trends using artificial-intelligence-based models” were features that appealed to Energy Super.

As part of its work to win the business, Zurich in a live demonstration used artificial intelligence to identify outliers in Energy Super’s claims experience that create opportunities for claims assessments, rehabilitation and mental health and wellness programs.

Zurich also showed how its “Einstein” artificial intelligence tool can be used to feed the fund with real-time data that can be analyzed immediately and used to meet trustee responsibilities.

Mr. Kerr pointed out that a track record of working with group insurance customers with a team that understands the customer’s business was among the reasons Energy Super chose Zurich. “Our philosophy around rehabilitation engagement is to provide bespoke and tailored support based on what each individual member needs,” he said.

The Energy Super mandate is the latest success for Zurich in a region where its business is growing. Earlier this year, Japan Life marked one million in-force life policies and in November Japan P&C hit one million in-force direct motor policies. The region has also strengthened its distribution network with other alliances in Malaysia and Zurich will become the leading international property/casualty insurer based on gross written premiums in Indonesia when the acquisition of Adira Insurance closes.

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