* BIMA, the leading provider of mobile-delivered insurance in emerging markets, raises funding for expansion into new markets including Paraguay, Cambodia, and the Philippines
* BIMA has seven million customers in Africa, Asia and Latin America and is backed by leading emerging markets investors Kinnevik and LeapFrog Investments and by Millicom
STOCKHOLM, 2nd April 2014– Bima, the leading provider of mobile-delivered insurance in emerging markets, today announced it has raised US$22m to support its expansion into several new markets in Africa, Asia and Latin America. BIMA has grown rapidly since its launch three years ago and now reaches seven million customers in eight markets via insurance products such as life, accident and health cover. BIMA’s customer base is growing at a rate of 500,000 new policyholders per month, reflecting pent-up consumer demand for its products – in Bangladesh alone, the company’s entry increased the number of insurance policies in the country by 50%.
Gustaf Agartson, CEO of BIMA, said: “African, Asian and Latin American economies have been transformed over the past decade by soaring mobile usage and the birth of mobile money. Yet, the mobile revolution for financial services in these markets is still at the start of its growth curve, and we are going to start to see insurance offerings enter the mainstream of the mobile telecommunications industry. BIMA’s new capital injection, and the distinctive expertise of our shareholders, will enable us to innovate, scale, and retain our place at the forefront of this movement for years to come.”
The capital was raised through follow-on funding from BIMA’s three existing shareholders: emerging markets focused investors Kinnevik and LeapFrog Investments, and Millicom, the international telecommunications and media company. Mia Brunell Livfors, CEO of Kinnevik, commented: “BIMA has pioneered mobile micro-insurance in emerging markets. We are proud to have played a key role in BIMA’s story so far – and look forward to continuing to support BIMA and its management team in its next phase of growth.”
BIMA currently provides insurance products to customers in eight markets, including Ghana, Senegal, Tanzania, Mauritius, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia. BIMA recently announced its entry into Latin America with a successful launch in Honduras. Over the next six months, Bima anticipates tapping several new markets, including Cambodia, the Philippines, and Paraguay, as well as a number of other South Asian and African economies. The firm also anticipates new product launches and distribution opportunities in several of its markets in the near future.
BIMA is the leader in mobile-delivered insurance in emerging markets. Launched in late 2010, BIMA currently reaches seven million people across eight countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, including Ghana, Senegal, Tanzania, Mauritius, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and Honduras.
BIMA partners with mobile operators and insurance companies, connecting the two to provide insurance including life, health and accident cover via mobile phone. BIMA also provides both parties with product development expertise, a dedicated distribution force, efficient customer service with rapid claims payment, and a seamless mobile insurance platform. Mobile operators are able to bolster revenue, loyalty and performance, while insurance companies are able to scale, accessing a vast new customer base.
Seizing the opportunity presented by the boom in mobile phone usage in emerging markets, BIMA’s innovative technology and distribution strategy enables low-income consumers to access simple, affordable financial services, sustainably and at scale. The firm has more than 1000 local employees, who take time to educate each customer about insurance services, and is a partnership between specialist emerging markets companies Kinnevik and LeapFrog Investments, and the international telecommunications and media firm Millicom.
Investment AB Kinnevik is a leading, long-term oriented investment company based in Sweden. Kinnevik primarily invests in consumer centric businesses that provide innovative and value-added technology-enabled services. Our main areas of focus are the Communications, e-Commerce, Entertainment and Financial Services sectors. We own significant stakes in over 50 companies that operate in more than 80 countries across five continents, with a particular emphasis on growth markets. The Kinnevik Group employs more than 90 000 people around the world.
Kinnevik actively supports the companies in which it invests and plays an influential role on their respective Boards. Kinnevik was founded in 1936 by three Swedish families who continue to play a leadership role in the ownership of the Company and in the pursuit of its entrepreneurial ventures.
Kinnevik’s shares are listed on Nasdaq OMX Stockholm’s list for large cap companies under the ticker codes KINV A and KINV B.
About LeapFrog Investments
LeapFrog Investments is a specialist investor in emerging markets financial services, seizing the growth opportunity presented by two billion emerging consumers in Africa and Asia. LeapFrog’s portfolio companies currently provide insurance, savings and pensions products to over 19.5 million people in countries such as India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. A pioneer in profit-with-purpose investment, the LeapFrog team draws on decades of operational experience to identify and help build extraordinary companies that deliver top-tier financial and social returns. LeapFrog’s distinctive investment strategy has attracted several of the world’s leading institutional investors. The group has raised over $200 million for the first close of its most recent private equity fund.
Millicom is a leading international telecommunications and media company dedicated to emerging markets in Latin America and Africa. Millicom sets the pace when it comes to providing digital lifestyle services to the world’s emerging markets, giving access to the world, primarily through mobile devices. Operating in 15 countries, Millicom offers innovative and customer-centric products. Millicom employs more than 10,000 people and provides mobile, cable, broadband, TV content, online and financial services to over 50 million customers. Founded in 1990, Millicom is headquartered in Luxembourg and listed on NASDAQ OMX Stockholm under the symbol MIC. In 2013 Millicom generated revenue of $5.16 billion and EBITDA of $1.9 billion.
Gustaf Agartson, CEO
Torun Litzén, Director, Investor Relations
Phone: +46 (0)8 562 000 83
Mobile: +46 (0) 70 762 00 83
Stephen Bowey, Partner
+61 407 340 453
Julian Eccles, VP, Corporate Communications
+ 44 7720 409374