In a country like the Philippines where less than 10% of the total population has access to an easily available microinsurance plan, two of the biggest names in the Visayas and Mindanao region joined forces to ensure that the larger part of the population will continue to be protected, especially during times of need through its own brand of pre-need products.
Dubbed Cosmopolitan CLIMBS, the new company is a product of two forces joining together for one common goals — to make sure that every Filipino, particularly those in the marginalized sector, will have access to affordable pre-need plans.
Cosmopolitan Memorial, the largest memorial company in the Vis/Min region, with over 60 years in the business, has become the go-to company for OFWs, expats and the VisMin region for their funeral needs; and CLIMBS, started in 1970 to protect a number of VisMin cooperatives but has since evolved into a dynamic financial consortium in the VIsMin region with the following businesses under its portfolio: life and assurance, real estate, investment, among others.
During the press conference which was personally graced by Commissioner Dennis Funa of the Insurance Commission (IC), the IC head has expressed his support on the founding of Cosmopolitan Climbs and congratulated the company’s heads, headed by Mr. Renato Dychangco, Jr who is currently serving as chairman, and Mr. Noel D. Raboy, in his capacity as president.
Funa shared that with the establishment of Cosmopolitan Climbs, Filipinos will have more options in choosing a pre-need plan that works best for their budget and their needs, which answers the goal of the government to have more than 20 million Filipinos insured by the year 2020.
As someone who is also exposed in microinsurance, and who considers personal finance and financial literacy as an advocacy; I believe that its about time that more pre-need products are made available by making it more affordable to a larger number of Filipinos. The lack of financial literacy among Filipinos also serves as a stumbling block in selling products like micro insurance and pre-needs. It also doesn’t help hearing largely-negative experiences from those who availed of pre-need plans from big companies who has since then folded.
Cosmopolitan Climbs president Raboy is bullish and optimistic about their latest offering: “Our main market are cooperatives and associations, particularly based on the provinces; whose large base of members, serves as a good market for Cosmopolitan Climbs,” he explained during the press briefing held recently at the Marriott Hotel in Pasay City. By targeting cooperatives, the company is taking advantage of the large pool of potential plan holders, while also tapping the expertise and the machinery of a cooperative to sell and promote pre-need among members. By working with cooperatives, Cosmopolitan Climbs lessens the chances of abandoned plans due to financial constraints as there are available and pre-set funds per member.
It also helps that the new pre-need company to hit the local market is backed by a solid alliance of trusted brands, nationwide. Climbs prides itself of a solid financial footing, as manifested by the number of claims they were able to process and release during the Typhoon Haiyan which laid waste to the livelihood of our many kababayans in the Visayas region. Cosmopolitan Memorial meanwhile, has already extended its presence beyond the Southern Region and in fact is now solidying their presence in Luzon and even in Metro Manila.
The group is set to formally get the IC approval on their line-up of pre-need products, but hopes to sell a plan for as low as five hundred pesos a month.