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Chola MS Insurance aims Rs.2,500 crore premium

Chennai, India: Non-life insurer Cholamandalam MS General Insurance Company Ltd. (Chola MS) will focus on increasing its corporate and health insurance business to get a gross premium of Rs. 2,500 crore this fiscal, a top company official said.

"We will now start looking at increasing our corporate or commercial lines of business (fire, transit, burglary and others) and also the health insurance. Currently only 10 percent of our business is from commercial lines," S. S. Gopalarathnam, managing director, told reporters here Tuesday.

He said the idea is to double the business from the corporate sector to 20 percent from the current levels, and the health insurance business to 25 percent from the present levels of 11 percent in five years' time.

By that time the business from motor insurance would come down to 50 percent from the current level of 67 percent, Gopalarathnam remarked.

Announcing the city-based company's financial performance for 2013-14, he said Chola MS closed last year with a gross premium of Rs. 1,855 crore and a net profit of Rs. 70 crore.

During 2012-13 the company's premium income was Rs. 1,620 crore and net profit was Rs. 60 crore.

The investment income for the period under review stood at Rs. 175 crore up from Rs. 112 crore the previous year.

Queried about the underwriting results, he said the company posted an underwriting loss (simply put premium income minus claims pay out, expenses) Rs. 18 crore as against an underwriting profit of Rs. 5.5 crore earned the previous year.

"There were few losses due to flood and cyclone that increased the claims outgo and impacting the underwriting results," he said.

He said the company's premium retention and renewal ratio stands at 82.5 percent and 60 percent respectively.

According to officials, the company is also focussing on increasing the renewal ratio as even a marginal increase will result in sizeable income.

Gopalarathnam said the premium and net profit target for the current fiscal is Rs. 2,500 crore and Rs. 180 crore respectively.

He said the industry grew by 11 percent last fiscal and if there is a stable government at the centre then the growth rate will be around 20 percent for the industry this fiscal.(IANS)

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