Nib ties knot with Fidelity

ROB STOCK
Last updated 14:49 25/02/2014

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Australian-owned health insurer nib is to sell life insurance in New Zealand, in an innovative tie-up with Fidelity Life.

Fresh from revealing its medical insurance policyholder numbers were on the rise, the New Zealand arm of the ASX-listed nib has announced the move that is believed to be a first in this country.

In Australia, nib sells "white labelled" life insurance as well as its own health insurance. Nib New Zealand chief executive Rob Hennin said the company would look to emulate that in the coming months.

Nib in New Zealand has reached an agreement with Fidelity Life under which insurance advisers will be able to bundle nib health policies with Fidelity Life insurances like trauma, income-protection and life insurance.

Bundling is used to discount premiums for people who buy more than one policy from a single provider, but it is understood the nib-Fidelity agreement is a first between two separate insurance companies in New Zealand.

Hennin said the partnership reflected their intent to grow the insurance market "by providing consumers with real choice and flexibility to meet their individual needs".

The announcement could also pave the way for nib to begin direct sales of life insurance in New Zealand.

In Australia, its life insurance is underwritten by TAL Life Insurance, which was previously ASX-listed Tower Australia.TAL went private after being bought by the Dai-ichi Life Group.

Tower in New Zealand sold its life insurance business to Fidelity Life last year.

Fidelity Life chief executive Milton Jennings said: "This new alliance signals an exciting progression for the industry and we're excited to partner with nib to deliver customers an attractive combined insurance offering."

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- Fairfax Media

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