The Association of International Life Offices (Ailo) has published the first in a series of thematic reports based on feedback from 23 Ailo member companies.
The research has revealed that Ailo members use a wide variety of distribution channels. IFAs are the dominant channel, followed by bancassurance and company agents. However, if all bank-sourced business is included as a single entity it runs the IFA channel much closer, particularly in Europe, which is the largest geographic region by market size.
Some 65% of Ailo members have more of an open mind regarding considering alternative channels of distribution than previously recognised, as long as they are able to access their existing target market customers via another route.
59% of respondents expressed an interest in developing ‘white label’ products for other financial institutions and 35% would consider a web-based offering.
However, some concerns were raised regarding the adoption of alternative channels which included greater regulatory scrutiny and not having the specialist skills in-house.
Simon Willoughby, Ailo proposition executive, said: “The cross-border nature of our members’ businesses makes the gathering of reliable management information extremely difficult and, for the uninformed, virtually impossible to interpret accurately. There is, in effect, a management information deficit in this niche sector.”