Bima Sugam to offer free services to consumers: IRDAI | Insurance News


Bima Sugam, the ambitious insurance electronic marketplace which is being kicked off by the Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority of India (IRDAI), will offer free services to consumers through a not-for-profit structure.

The shareholding of the proposed company, which will develop, operate and maintain the platform, will be widely held among life insurers, general and health insurers with no single entity having controlling stake. The shareholders, as and when required, will contribute to the capital requirement of the company, IRDAI said.

“Consumers shall not be charged for availing the services of the marketplace,” the regulator said.

Bima Sugam is a digital public infrastructure or protocol with open standards and interoperable platforms, enabling seamless integration with various services to facilitate purchase, sale, settlement of insurance claims, grievance redressal and servicing of insurance policies and other related matters as allowed by the authority under a single platform. All insurance companies will join the proposed platform.

Insurers will facilitate availability of their insurance products for sale and provide all services related to an insurance policy including settlement of insurance claims and grievance redressal on the platform on an ongoing basis.

Festive offer

The new company will seek prior approval of the IRDAI for appointment, reappointment, termination and change in the terms and conditions of the appointment of Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer. “The company will appoint key managerial persons with appropriate experience, a mix of skills, and the integrity necessary to discharge their responsibilities for the operation and risk management of the Marketplace and clearly specify the roles and responsibilities of the management,” IRDAI said in its draft regulations.

IRDAI would nominate two members on the board of company. Alok Rungta, Deputy CEO and Chief Financial Officer, Future Generali India Life Insurance Company, said, “We are happy to witness the imminent launch of IRDAI’s ‘Bima Sugam’. This initiative represents more than just a digital platform… it’s a transformative step in our ongoing commitment to empower policyholders and reshape the insurance landscape.”

The company, through collaboration and innovation, is poised to enhance accessibility, affordability and transparency, he said. “With its not-for-profit structure and diversified shareholding, it is set to become the central hub for insurers, intermediaries, and consumers alike. This advancement aligns seamlessly with our industry’s collective vision, propelling us toward the ambitious goal of ‘insurance for all by 2047.’ Bima Sugam isn’t just a welcome development… it points to a future where consumers and industry advancements work together for the benefit of all,” he said.

The proposed platform will a not-for-profit entity established through a company formed under Section 8 of the Companies Act, 2013.

According to Tarun Chugh, MD & CEO, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, the draft regulations for Bima Sugam is a big step towards bringing this transformative initiative to fruition. “The regulations focus on making insurance easy to access and affordable for everyone. It’s towards streamlining the entire insurance value chain, from policy issuance to claim settlement, thereby promoting transparency and collaboration at every stage. These initiatives will play a huge role in driving penetration of insurance and enabling us achieve the vision of ‘insurance for all’ by 2047,” he said.

This platform will raise awareness about insurance and significantly enhance the overall customer experience in the industry, similar to the transformative impact that UPI has had on payments in India, said the CEO of an insurance firm. “It will contribute towards easy accessibility of insurance and making products more affordable,” he said.

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