Alexander Forbes East Africa rebrands to Zamara and eyes Pan-African expansion
Alexander Forbes East Africa has rebranded to Zamara. This is as a consequence of ownership changes that has resulted in Alexander Forbes Group of South Africa reducing its stake to comply with an amendment to the Retirement Benefits Act, which restricts foreign ownership in a pension fund administrator to a maximum of 40 per cent.
The firm currently known as Zamara has been in existence for 23 years, having started in 1994 as a niche actuarial firm, Hymans Robertson. The firm became part of the Alexander Forbes Group in 2003. Zamara currently has assets worth 240 Million and serves 160,000 Kenyans, which translates to a third of all pension holders. The Zamara team consists of actuaries and analysts who enable the company to offer services ranging from retirement arrangements and benefits consulting, investment consulting, insurance consulting, trust beneficiary services, SME solutions among others.
Zamara has set its sights on African markets as it seeks to capitalise on the growing demand for insurance, brokerage and similar services on the continent, with the Zamara Group Chief Executive Officer Sundeep Raichura confirming that the firm has already identified regional markets, starting with Rwanda and Nigeria, where it will expand operations.
Similar to Kenya, insurance penetration on the continent, with the exception of South Africa, is at 3 per cent of GDP giving ample room to increase coverage. For Kenya, Zamara is exploring alternative and new long-term savings strategies that would increase uptake of products for financing home ownership, medical care, education and retirement plans.
The new entity, Zamara, is now majority owned by Kenyan investors and the Employee Share Ownership Plan (ESOP). The leadership team will remain unchanged led by Board Chairman Mr Michael Waweru, Group Chief Executive Sundeep Raichura and Executive Director James Olubayi.
Kenya is doing badly when it comes to retirement savings as only about 15% have made retirement arrangements and with a whooping 21% of the average Kenyan worker going towards retirement savings, it’s no wonder why. This reality however, offers an opportunity for growth as Kenyans become more aware of the importance of planning for retirement and the options available especially to those not in the formal job market to take control of their financial future.http://www.mwendengao.com/2017/08/23/alexander-forbes-east-africa-rebrands-to-zamara-and-eyes-pan-african-expansion/LifestyleAlexander Forbes,Retirement Planning,Retirement Savings,Zamara