Kotak note this morning highlighted that there is a proposal to increase tax rate of insurance companies to the corporate tax rate from the 14.3 percent currently.
To discuss the same and outlook for the industry, CNBC-Tv18 spoke to Rajesh Sud, MD & CEO, Max Life Insurance. He said these talks were still premature and there is no draft by the tax authorities so far to increase tax rates.
Talking about business outlook going forward, he said 23 percent of new customers in H1FY18 came in protection plans.
Moreover, he said protection products do have better underwriting and therefore aid margins.
Margins for each company depends on their product mix, cost of distribution etc it is a combination of many factors, he said, adding that for Max Life the blended margins were at 18 percent. ULIP products would be slightly lower and protection products would be higher and mix of that is upto 18 percent.
When asked if they were still looking for merger partners since their merger with HDFC Standard did not go through, he said theirs was a strong performing franchise with consistent performance.
Business is in good shape with healthy capital and profits and have a solid franchise, said Sud, adding that they would continue to build on this.
However, they are always looking for growth opportunities in terms of partnerships with banks under open architecture. The company already has strong partnership with banks like Axis Bank, Lakshmi Vilas Bank and Yes Bank and other small urban co-operative banks, he said.
Going forward if they found any likeminded opportunities whether through banks or acquisitions then they would look at them, said Sud. However, clarifying that it would not take away their focus on organic growth.
According to him, their company is the only player in the market to have had a sustainable growth rate on CAGR basis.
He said currently, ULIP comprises 35 percent of their product while some peers have it at 75 percent levels.For the full interview, watch video