Insurance Daily | May 2024

That the topic of protection must naturally be correlated with that of finance is now known to almost all the major banking and insurance groups, but it was not always like this.

Bancassurance services originated in France, in the 1980s, with the integration between the banking and insurance systems, which arrived amidst many doubts in Italy at the beginning of the following decade.

Today, Italian banks are one of the most important channels for the distribution of non-life and life insurance products, because they have fully embraced the concept of insurance banking.

Certainly, this is a marriage of interest dictated by the search for commission sources, in view of the next progressive lowering of rates, necessary both to remunerate shareholders but also – and this is good and right – to guarantee sustainable growth with investments in innovation, communication, increasing the ability to attract new customers who are currently not adequately served.

There are unexplored prairies awaiting the banks at the gate, just think that in Italy only 10% of the population is adequately protected from the most basic risks, both in the non-life and life sectors, private customers and entrepreneurs with a paltry 25% are no exception. % correctly insured against individual and corporate risks.

The moves of the two main Italian banks – Intesa Sanpaolo and UniCredit – despite the inherent differences that distinguish them, are demonstrating how relevant the issue of protection is.

Let’s start with Intesa Sanpaolo which has reorganized its Wealth Management hub, under the direction of Tommaso Corcos, bringing together three divisions Asset Management (Eurizon), Insurance (Intesa Sanpaolo Vita), Private Banking and the Fideuram, San Paolo Invest and IW networks.

It is enough to read the curriculum vitae of the two top managers at the head of the asset management and insurance division respectively to understand how savings management and protection are inextricably linked in Intesa Sanpaolo.

Maria Luisa Gota, previously head of Fideuram Vita, a leading company in Italy in the life insurance sector, was appointed as CEO of the asset management division and head of Eurizon.

Virginia Borla is the new CEO and General Manager of Intesa Sanpaolo Vita, with experience that began on the front line as a bank manager to reach the top of the Banca dei Territori.

UniCredit has also dropped its ace with the appointment of Alessandro Santoliquido as head of its pan-European insurance business starting from 1 July 2024, the manager will be responsible for the implementation of the Group’s insurance strategies, an area in which UniCredit sees strong dynamics and growth potential.

Santoliquido is also out of class, with experience at the top of Allianz, Amissima, General Director of Cronos Vita Assicurazioni, the company that took over and saved Eurovita.

There are all the conditions for a real and long-awaited response to the needs of Italian families and businesses, based on the integration of the three pillars of consultancy: protection, savings management and lending. 

Given that the protection market is a market governed by supply or by banks and insurance companies, and that these are inextricably linked to the value of people, we start with the best premises.    

Nicola Ronchetti