ENTREPRENEURS, AGENTS AND BROKERS UNITED BY THE SAME FATE

Insurance Daily | April 2021 

Any entrepreneur has the privilege of being the object of attention of the insurance broker, among the most proactive professional categories of the world of insurance. 

Of course, this does not mean that the broker, like the insurance agent, is by far the most proactive professional figure who gravitates around the entrepreneur. 

In fact, in terms of proactivity, the broker and the agent come after the accountant, the financial advisor, the financial expert, the lawyer and the notary (source: 2019 AFASF survey on Italian entrepreneurs).

This means that brokers have or should have a vision and a wider range of solutions dedicated to businesses and entrepreneurs, assuming that their conflict of interest is lower than that of financial professionals working with one or few banks/financial networks. 

Obviously, the assessment of the proactive attitude of insurance agents towards businesses and entrepreneurs as lacking is determined by the average of the market, which suffers from the same drawback as Trilussa’s chicken – if someone eats two chickens and someone else doesn’t, they will have eaten an average of one chicken each, despite one of them not having eaten any.

Similarly, the market includes businesses with a very proactive attitude towards entrepreneurs, businesses and companies; in this context, hunter agents – those who tend to look for clients outside of their comfort zone – make all the difference rather than the so-called farmer agents, who only care about their own metaphorical vegetable garden.

Now more than ever, insurance agents and brokers are essential to entrepreneurs – let’s just think of business continuity management or the insurance coverage for managers through keyman insurance policies. 

Today, the insurance market seems to be sustained by two pillars: collective health insurance contracts undertaken by companies in support of their employees; and bancassurance agreements. 

We are all aware that collective health insurance contracts are addressed mainly to large businesses which represent less than 2% of Italian companies; moreover, in a time of bank mergers, it is better not to count too much on bancassurance agreements (see the Aviva and UBI instances).

Over the next 20 years, at least 800 billion euros in movable, real estate and business assets are going to be transferred from boomers (born between 1946 to 1964) to millennials (born between 1980 and 2000).

Small and medium-sized companies employ 82% of workers and represent 92% of active businesses. They are often managed by one key figure on which depends the fate of the company and its employment rate. 

So, these resources need to be protected for the survival of the company and the production sector of the Country. The pandemic has increased the necessity not to defer this any further. 

5 million entrepreneurs and small businesses need protection, and they are often unaware of this: wouldn’t it be worth calling them?

Nicola Ronchetti 

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