AIA PHILIPPINES Life and General Insurance Co., Inc. will intensify its marketing efforts in the next two years to boost its business as it looks to capitalize on the robust outlook for the economy.

“You will see a proliferation of AIA branding across the Philippines over the next 18 to 24 months. We are going to do a big job of raising awareness that we are connected to the regional business where we lead our industry, where our brand is ubiquitous,” AIA Group Chief Marketing Officer Stuart A. Spencer told reporters at a briefing on Friday.

The AIA Group aims to achieve the same level of brand awareness that its previous brand name Philam Life had, he said.

Mr. Spencer said the Philippines’ robust economic outlook presents growth opportunities for the company. Multilateral lenders and international debt watchers expect the Philippines to be one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia this year and next.

“We believe that the dynamism, passion, capability of the Filipino people, the great GDP (gross domestic product) growth that we’re seeing in the Philippines now, high levels of employment, high levels of foreign direct investment, and, I would say, relative political stability, are great ingredients for us to see from a long-term perspective that the Philippines is a great place for us to continue to invest,” he said.

AIA Group is also looking to increase its local relevance by tackling issues that matter to specific demographics and creating products based on these concerns, Mr. Spencer said.

“What I want is more focus on credibility… So, the strategy now is our businesses are tapping subject matter experts, influencers, well-known people with expertise in environmental issues, climate issues, nutrition issues, and mental health issues. I want to get deeper and more profound on the issues that matter to communities,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mr. Spencer said insurance markets in Asia are continuing to digitalize, with technologies like artificial intelligence being implemented across the industry.

While face-to-face interactions will likely still be the dominant form of insurance distribution, technological tools are expected be implemented to improve firms’ know your customer or KYC processes, he said, adding this will help insurers narrow down what products they can offer to their clients.

Increased awareness and need for healthcare due to the coronavirus pandemic have also prompted insurers to adjust their products depending on their target markets, Mr. Spencer said.

“Insurers have to adjust their mix and really be able to — because we’re in long-term business — better understand demographic trends than I think we’ve ever had to in the past, because they’re shaping the industry,” he said.

The high interest rate environment also continues to affect demand for insurance products, Mr. Spencer added.

“I think high interest rates in general dampen consumer sentiment and demand. It just makes borrowing more expensive and it deters consumers from investing and taking risks. For insurers, higher interest rates mean higher returns on all of our invested assets. So, it’s a mixed bag, as you can appreciate,” he said.

AIA Philippines booked a premium income of P12.91 billion in 2023, while its net income stood at P2.66 billion. — A.M.C. Sy