ACLEDA Bank is Cambodia’s largest retail and commercial bank, and its distribution partnership with Prudential is described as the first of its kind in the country.
Financial terms and other technical details of the new distribution partnership were not disclosed. The launch makes Cambodia the 13th Asian market in which Prudential has life insurance operations.
News of Prudential Asia’s latest plans for the Cambodian market was contained in a statement released this morning, and comes six months after Prudential revealed that it had been given the go-ahead in principle from Cambodia’s Ministry of Economy and Finance to establish a wholly foreign-owned life insurance operation in the country.
As reported at that time, Prudential first established a representative office in Phnom Penh in December 2010.
In this morning’s statement, Prudential said it had presented “a special commemorative plaque” to its first Khmer policyholder, as it formally kicked off its business in Cambodia.
Pankaj Banerjee, whose previous roles included a stint with Prudential’s Vietnamese operations, is heading up Prudential Cambodia as chief executive.
He said Prudential planned to leverage its "vast experience of around 90 years in Asia" and distribution partner ACLEDA’s "unmatched local knowledge" to "develop-jointly tailored products to suit the financial needs of the Cambodian people".
Barry Stowe, chief executive of Prudential Corporation Asia, said the launch of the Cambodian business was “a milestone for Prudential in Asia”, and pledged to work closely with the Cambodian government and ACLEDA to develop Cambodia’s nascent insurance industry.
Prudential said it plans to reach its Cambodian customers through ACLEDA’s network of 238 branches and offices throughout the country.
Through these outlets, the bank’s customers will be able to access “PRU myfamily”, Prudential’s flagship product for the Cambodian market, which provides clients with both life insurance protection and a guaranteed cash benefit at maturity.
The size of Prudential Asia’s Cambodian sales force was not disclosed, but the company said it would be deployed “across the ACLEDA Bank branch network”.
Prudential Asia said it planned to “extend its expertise” to ACLEDA in such areas as product development, insurance sales management, staff training and customer services, in order to help develop their sales platform.
Prudential’s expansion into Cambodia represents the latest effort by a major European insurance company to target Asia’s potentially lucrative and thus-far little tapped insurance market. As reported, Toronto-based Manulife has also revealed plans to sell its products in Cambodia, in what it said would be its eleventh operation in Asia.