INSURANCE Tatil paid out approximately $20 million to settle insurance claims resulting from last year’s natural disasters, including the devastating floods in October and August’s 6.9 magnitude earthquake.
But while the claims were unexpected and a one-off payment, the insurer’s managing director, Musa Ibrahim, assured that the company has the largest balance sheet of all (US-based ratings agency) AM Best-rated companies in the region. “We are very well capitalised. Profitability-wise, (our) profit as a percentage of net income is far and above anyone else in the local market. The type of losses we had, the dollar value was quantified as $20 million, with 75 per cent motor claims and 25 per cent earthquake, so $15 million motor and $5 million earthquake,” Ibrahim said at a stockbroker’s meeting yesterday at Tatil Building, Maraval Road.
The company is also adequately covered by reinsurance, added Norman Sabga, chairman of Tatil’s parent company, Ansa McAl, and most of the flood claims were for automotive coverage.
Reinsurance is the practice whereby insurers transfer portions of their risk portfolios to other parties as a way to reduce losses that may result from large obligations from insurance claims.
Ibrahim added that while the claims settlements did make a slight dent in the company’s profits, its performance for 2018 was “very strong,” recording $70 million in profits for the year.
“Tatil is one of the better established in the international market and well respected in the history of claims. Reinsurers tend to look at us with a lot more respect,” Ansa McAl executive director Ray Sumairsingh said. Tatil was the second largest motor underwriter in TT and its reinsurance rate for motor in case of accumulation of losses for flood, for example,is probably among the best three in the region, while its property reinsurance are triple AAA rated securities, he added. The company also buys more than the recommended ten per cent minimum of cover. “We buy 15.5 per cent for TT and 17.5 per cent for Barbados, so, we really don’t ‘chinks’ on the level of protection that we buy. And basically I think we are well covered for natural disasters,” he said.