The South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) is the largest union in the municipal sector, with over 140 000 active members. SAMWU has long wished to take charge of and create its own financial services entity, and despite having relationships with multiple insurance providers, the launch of its own branded financial services arm has taken time to become a reality.
TBFS started as a joint venture in the Hollard Life stable, established in 1997 as a funeral/micro insurance product & administration specialist, providing A to Z product and administration capability. With its ability to negotiate price as an underwriting manager, structure underwriting relationship, design, launch and administer insurance products, TBFS offers SAMWU an immediate full-blown insurance “plug & play” skill set and capability.
TBFS has been a financial services provider to SAMWU members since 2001, providing funeral insurance benefits underwritten by Hollard life.
Combining TBFS underwriting knowledge, FAIS licenses and scalable administration together with the SAMWU brand and member loyalty on a joint venture basis, an opportunity exists to make the SAMWU financial services vision a reality.
In a nutshell, the joint venture provides SAMWU with an immediate SAMWU “plug & play” insurance department, combines TBFS expertise & systems with SAMWU Brand & objectives and provides additional revenue to SAMWU.
SAMWU Financial Services will not be a registered Financial Services provider, but will rather manage and direct the insurance affairs of the various insurance and financial service providers who offer insurance to SAMWU members, to ensure correct advice is given by intermediaries, proper servicing of members and build better working relationships between the union and the providers. All SAMWU Financial Services product or services will be correctly underwritten by appropriate underwriters and sold via correctly licensed financial services providers.
After upgrading the current Hollard funeral benefits, SAMWU Financial Services will launch its own branded services policies, designed to complement existing member benefits, regardless of underwriter. Thereafter a wider range of SAMWU Branded insurance benefits will be developed and released, from funeral, cell phone, accident, medical insurance & more.
Apart from creating SAMWU branded insurance benefits, SAMWU Financial Services will look to creating employment opportunities for SAMWU members, generate revenue for SAMWU member projects such as the SAMWU college and make SAMWU more independent in respect of its own financial income.
SAMWU Financial Services will operate as a separate entity, but work within the existing SAMWU structures. A cloud based administration viewing capability will allow regions more oversight over their own members and operations.