According to the Nikkei Asian Review, the company is looking to open nearly 50 agencies in Singapore over the next decade, with the first such unit expected to open in the city-state as early as the summer.
The agencies will sell namely life insurance policies in a market still heavily reliant on savings-oriented policies. Most agencies in Singapore are also tied to a specific insurer.
Sony Life will establish a local joint venture next month to oversee the new business, partnering with Tokyo-based Starts Securities, which has a track record in insurance sales in Japan.
Sony Life will own 74% of the venture, with Starts holding the remaining 26%.
The insurer said it intends to make the new business profitable in five years’ time and to recoup accumulated losses by the ninth year, with the eventual aim of offering its own products via agencies.
“Sony Life believes that its strength in selling insurance products through sophisticated consulting has a good chance of finding potential customers within the country,” the insurer said in a statement.
Last year, it acquired a substantial stake in diversified Australian financial services company ClearView Wealth, which offers life insurance among other financial products.