PROPARCO invests €10 million in insurer Activa

September 14, 2016

Proparco, a subsidiary of the French Development Agency (AFD) dedicated to the private sector has pledged to invest 10 million euros in equity in the Activa group to support its development Sub-Saharan Africa.

Established in Cameroon in 1998, Activa Group is a major player in the insurance (life and non-life) in sub-Saharan Africa. It has subsidiaries in five countries: Cameroon (Activa Activa Insurance and Life), Ghana (Ghana Activa International), Guinea (UGAR Activa and Activa Life), Liberia (Liberia Activa International) and Sierra Leone (Activa International Sierra Leone). Its shareholders are majority owned by its founder Richard Lowe and private Cameroonian alongside Proparco and IFC.

Activa grows on the African continent, relying in particular on the Globus network he founded in 2007. Globus is a non-integrated network of insurers offering customers and international brokers, via a platform based in Cameroon, a solution of globalized insurance in more than 40 countries on the continent, French, English, Arabic or Portuguese. This is the preferred partner of major international insurers that do not have subsidiaries in Africa (Generali, Zurich, Chubb, XL, etc.). Globus has also established a captive reinsurance company, Globus Re.

The funds invested will support the growth of Activa Group, particularly in Central Africa and West Africa. On entering the capital Activa, Proparco mark its support for the vision supported by a dynamic group, which develops on an African market expansion.It represents, for the moment, only 1.5% of the global insurance market and, with the exception of South Africa, the penetration rate does not exceed 1% of the continent’s GDP. Nevertheless, several factors point to rapid growth of the sector, starting with the economic dynamism of Africa, the emergence of middle classes, developing new distribution channels such as the supply of goods and services via telephony mobile.

This sector boom is especially expected that insurance has the potential to contribute to the development of Africa: it contributes, in fact, to stimulate growth, increase the resilience of local economies to extreme events and promote solidarity between individuals. Added to this is the ability for the moment limited to Africa, to channel household savings and invest in companies and infrastructure projects for local development. Source: Ecofin