A universal life insurance product tailored for Vietnamese

The leading insurer in the UK with over 320 years of experience, Aviva recently introduced to Vietnam its new whole life universal life insurance product called Aviva - Chon An Vui. Vietnam Investment Review spoke to Tan Haifeng, the company’s CFO and appointed actuary, about Aviva’s strategy to attract customers.

Actuaries are generally regarded as playing a very important role in emerging markets like Vietnam to promote and design insurance products. As Aviva Vietnam’s appointed actuary, what do you think about this?

The Actuary plays an equally important role with other insurance colleagues across the value chain to achieve customer satisfaction. We can only deliver excellent experiences to customers when we all put customers at the heart of our decisions and collaborate seamlessly.

The actuary takes greater accountability in ensuring fairness and sustainability. Here, fairness is about bringing good product value to customers, fair pricing, and overall fairness between existing and new customers, the right rewards for customer loyalty, and adequate rewards for distribution advice. In short, it’s about value optimisation across customer segments, distribution, and shareholders. Sustainability is about the peace of mind we offer our customers, distribution, and partners – it’s the assurance that we are here as their lifetime partner and protector because life insurance is a lifetime commitment for peace of mind.

From your extensive experience working as an actuary in various Asian markets, how would you define a good/successful life insurance product?

The product landscape can vary significantly in different markets because of differences in the social security system, economy, demography, culture, and customer preference – just to name a few factors. However, the primary principles of what makes a good life insurance product remain similar, especially nowadays as customers all over the world are highly connected through social media and technology.

In my view, good life insurance products need to offer good value to customers, easy to understand policy terms, fair pricing, respect the choice of customers, and meet customers’ long-term needs. Last but not least, the insurer needs to offer excellent customer services.

Vietnam has a large population, however, the penetration rate of life insurance is only 1.3 per cent. How does Aviva view Vietnamese customers and the market?

Vietnam is growing rapidly, we can see personal incomes rising rapidly, improving insurance awareness, greater customer expectations, dynamic and young demographics, and hardworking workforce. All these factors drive the widening gap between Vietnamese customers’ insurance needs and existing social insurance coverage. Aviva Vietnam is in the right position to tackle these challenges and opportunities to meet customers’ need for saving and protection, such as protecting customers against medical inflation, financial burden under dread illness, declining interest rates for savings, as well as financial planning, among others.

Meanwhile, Vietnamese customers’ insurance needs are going to become more and more diversified because he/she is highly connected with the rest of the world, and their lifestyles are also evolving faster than other Asian countries. Aviva Vietnam must be able to mobilise our expertise and talent across Asia and make use of our leading competition capabilities globally to better serve Vietnamese customers.

Aviva Vietnam launched a new branding strategy in 2017 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aviva in Vietnam. How does Aviva Vietnam build customer trust?

Customer trust is critical. Customers need to trust the insurer that their family can be protected when disaster or unexpected incidents happen. Trust is the primary reason that Aviva Vietnam stands out and is chosen by customers.

Customers want products that offer good value, are easy to understand, and come with excellent service. Customer trust can be built only when each interaction with us is right. Aviva Vietnam needs to be great in insurance, because we have been operating insurance for more than 320 years. Our historical legacy, branding, and leading position in the UK are our largest assets to operate in Vietnam. We are committed to focusing on insurance fundamentals as a transparent and easily accessible partner of our customers and distributors. The fundamentals include pricing, underwriting, claims management, and policy servicing, among others.

We also must operate efficiently to build our competitive advantage so that we can offer greater customer value.

As the “father” of the recently-launched Aviva – Chon An Vui product, what were the guiding principles in the creation of this product especially meant for Vietnamese people, and what are the major the benefits it brings?

Aviva – Chon An Vui is one of the examples of Aviva Vietnam’s commitment to serving our Vietnamese customers, it strives to balance comprehensive protection and savings. The protection is very extensive – including death, accidental death, total permanent disability, critical illness, hospital and surgical coverage, and so on. In terms of savings, the product offers a reasonable guarantee to our customers for peace of mind. We are conscious about the importance of customer’s choice, hence Aviva – Chon An Vui is designed to offer reasonable flexibility for customer’s financial planning. We also value customer loyalty, hence loyal and persistent customers are rewarded with a persistency bonus designed for Aviva – Chon An Vui.

There are more new products in the pipeline by Aviva Vietnam to cater for diversified customer needs according to our customer data analytics and customer segmentation. We are committed to deepening our understanding of the dynamics and needs of Vietnamese customers and translating that into good product offerings.


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