Metlife to step up capital base to sustain growth

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Bangalore, Feb 20 (UNI) MetLife, one of the fast-growing private insurance companies, will scale up its paid-up capital base to Rs 1,230 crore from Rs 880 crore to sustain growth, company Managing Director Rajesh Relan said today.

Talking to newspersons here, Mr Relan said MetLife, with over 110 branches in 66 cities across the country and a strong portfolio of over 20 products, was enjoying 2.4 per cent market share.

The company, which started its operations in India in 2001, had sold over five lakh policies and gained a growth rate of over 156 per cent last year.

MetLife had registered a volume of Gross Written Premium (GWP) for Rs 586.3 crore at the end of December 2007 as against the GWP receipt of Rs 229 crore for 2006. ''The expected GWP receipt by December 2008 is about Rs 1,000 crore,'' he said.

MetLife had an employee base of over 50,000 and over 32,000 financial advisors all over the country with bancassurance tie-ups with five banks, including Axis Bank and UTI Bank, which had enabled it to reach out to over 13 million customers, he said.

Mr Relan said the decision to increase the capital base was also to support the company's growth plans in 2008. ''Our performance in 2007 had been excellent and we have taken significant strides towards achieving our vision of being a formidable player in the Indian life insurance industry. We are infusing additional capital to support our growth plans in India,'' Mr Relan added.

UNI MV RM SJ 1613

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