René Otto, the first CEO and co-founder of OUTsurance, has launched a competitor to his old company. Otto is the CE of MiWay, a financial services company that is a joint venture between Sanlam (JSE:SLM), Santam ((JSE:SNT) a subsidiary of Sanlam) and PSG (JSE:PSG).
Like OUTsurance, MiWay offers short-term insurance that cuts out the broker. However, MiWay differs from OUTsurance in that it offers other financial services – including home loans and credit life – under the same brand.
OUTsurance is part of the FirstRand group (JSE:FSR). FirstRand offers a range of financial services, but under different brands. For example, car financing is done through Wesbank, and private banking through RMB Private Bank (JSE:RMH).
Otto reckons it is cheaper and easier to offer products under a single umbrella. He says, this will allow MiWay to eliminate the need for clients to duplicate information in application forms. It will also allow “good risk” clients to benefit from lower prices on additional products.
Initially MiWay will focus on short-term insurance, motor warranties, credit life and home loans. But it aims to offer other financial products in time.
One of the distinguishing features of MiWay is its focus on the internet. Clients are able to take out a policy online, without making a call to a call centre. They are also able to manage their portfolios online.
MiWay also has a points-based rewards programme. Clients are rewarded for risk-lowering behaviour, loyalty and for referring new business. So if your friends or family encourage you into becoming a MiWay client, be sure to ask what’s in it for them.
Points can be used to buy products online, in a similar manner to FirstRand’s eBucks scheme.