The 7 Best Insurance Companies in Ethiopia (for 2024 Year)

Insurance Companies in Ethiopia

Best Insurance Companies in Ethiopia.

The number of people who got life insurance in 2023 has increased by 2% (from 50% to 52%) — a study by the LIMRA and Life Happens. It’s true that in these uncertain times, where a growing economy exposes us to new risks, considering a proper insurance can be a financial safeguard.

In Ethiopia, following the communist government overthrown in 1991, in 1994, a new monetary and banking Proclamation No. 83/1994 was issued to supervise domestic insurance companies. These new insurers were allowed to compete with government-owned Insurance Corporations, but banned the foreign ones. 

The thing behind the prohibition was that the local insurance industry was weak and needed time to build up its capital reserves. And that’s because opening up of the market to the global would expose local companies (including real estates like Afro Sweden PLC, which was founded by diaspora’s) to be dominated by financially stronger operations.

Coming back to the main point, insurance could be needed for health to protect you from the high costs of medical care, for a car to provide you financial coverage in case of accidents, and for a property to shield you from losses due to fire, theft, or natural disasters.

When an expected accident happens (Our Almighty Creator protects us from that!), the insurance company evaluates your risk using underwriting and determines whether to issue a policy. Most of all, at what price your Actual Cash Value (ACV) comes in, minus depreciation

Having said all of the introductions, this comprehensive blog post is aimed to help you pick the top insurance company in Ethiopia. Thus, you will make informed decisions when choosing an insurance provider for your needs. In the meantime, you can get the fair market value of your property at the time of unfortunate fate.

What are the Top Ethiopian Insurance Companies in 2024?

Extended from the previous one, in 2012/13, a new Proclamation (No. 746/2012) was issued regarding the needed minimum paid capital requirements for foreign insurance companies. That was 60,000,000 USD for non-life, 15,000,000 USD for life, and 75,000,000 USD for both life and non-life Ethiopian insurers.

On the flip side, domestic Ethiopian insurance companies are required to provide the minimum subscribed capital of 2,000,000,000 Ethiopian Birr. Note that the 50% has to be a paid up capital. Now, this is going to be crystal clear regarding why chosing or going after the best one makes all the difference.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve invested in real estates like Access, Addis Life, or other developers, you need an insurance. But no worries. We have got your back! The following are the 7 Best Insurance Companies of Ethiopia that you should consider to maximize the chance of your quick RISK or loss recovery in 2024:

  1. Nyala Insurance Company S.C.
  2. Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC).
  3. United Insurance Company SC (UNIC).
  4. National Insurance Company of Ethiopia (NICE).
  5. Lion Insurance Company (Ethiopia).
  6. Oromia Insurance Company (OIC).
  7. Nib Insurance S.Co.

1. Nyala Insurance Company S.C.

Established back in July 1995, Nyala Insurance Company S.C. focuses on providing innovative and accessible insurance products to the Ethiopian market with a variety of personal and commercial offerings.

Historically, the company was founded following the liberalization of the Ethiopian insurance business to the private sector in 1994. Then it has based its foundation by adhering with the Licensing and Supervision of Insurance Business Proclamation No. 85/1994.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the Nyala Insurance Company S.C.

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the Nyala Insurance Company S.C.:

  • Widely accessible branch networks that cover most of Ethiopia.
  • General, life, and micro-insurance services, like car, property (for instance, Abat Properties, and Akoya Properties needs an insurance if they didn’t get one yet), and some personal coverage options. 
  • With a paid-up capital exceeding Birr 300 million, with a strong financial position, NISCO executes its legal responsibility to pay for damages caused to its customers.
  • The company also offers a unique mobile phone insurance product.

In a nutshell, Nyala Insurance is a private company that is not backed by the government. To access their service, there will be a deductible to be paid as a liability. This is the amount of money you must pay out of pocket before the company starts to cover a loss that’s occurred to you.

Over the years, with a sum of 300 million Ethiopian Birr subscribed capital, this insurance operation has become one of the leading private insurance companies in Ethiopia. As of 2024, Nyala Insurance Company has over 20 years of experience under its belt.

2. Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC).

Founded back in 1976, the Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC) is a giant state-owned company of Ethiopia. Before the market opened up opportunities for others in the 1990’s, EIC, by proclamation No.68/1975, had held a monopoly on the industry. 

Historically, the corporation came into existence with 11 million Birr paid up capital (which is equivalent to 1.29 million US Dollar). The reason was because the Derg government has taken over all the assets and liabilities of the thirteen nationalized private insurance companies, and other companies, including TV stations of Ethiopia.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC).

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC):

  • Specific coverage for the agriculture sector.
  • A life insurance that comes for both in an individual and group plans, giving customers a sense of security and stability.
  • Non-life insurance that covers property and liability risks like motor, property damage, and others.
  • Have professional license salesperson agents as well as insurance brokers who represent the company and sell policies on behalf.

With its extensive branch network that is accessible across towns and cities, the company has been in the Ethiopian insurance sector for 19 years as a state owned sole insurer. Up to date, the Ethiopian Insurance Corporation remains a major insurance player with a back up from the government.

It is also important to note that after the demise of the Marxist regime in 1991 a fundamental change took place in political, economic and social. So, the EIC, under proclamation 201/94 and with 61 million Birr paid up capital, was reestablished as a public enterprise.

3. United Insurance Company SC (UNIC).

Founded back in November 1994, the United Insurance Company SC (UNIC-Ethiopia) works on the Replacement Cost Coverage area, which is paying you to replace your damaged property with new property of the same kind and quality, without depreciation.

Historically, the company was formed by 87 individuals and enterprises as well with an authorized capital of 25 million Birr. And the initial paid up capital was 8.073 million Birr. As of 2024, the total paid up capital of the United Insurance Company is around 372.95 million Ethiopian Birr.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the United Insurance Company SC (UNIC).

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the United Insurance Company SC (UNIC):

  • UNIC-Ethiopia strives to be the best overall insurer with a focus on technology, customer service, and other specialized categories.
  • Started as a non-life insurer focusing on car, property, travel, health, and the real estate businesses of Ethiopia. Now it expands to life insurance as well.
  • Individual and group life insurance plans for the beneficiary (a person or entity who receives payment from a policy upon the death of the insured).
  • It became the first to introduce modern individual life insurance policies as a private insurance company in Ethiopia.

In a nutshell, the United Insurance Company SC have built a strong reputation for trustworthiness and efficient claims handling over the years. However, it doesn’t have unique features like extensive branch networks or government backing.

That said, in 2002, the United Insurance Company merged with Lion Insurance Company. Because of the merger and the 7th extraordinary general meeting by the 467 shareholders, its capital has grown to 250 million Birr. Plus, following the 11th meeting in November 2018, the subscribed capital has reached 500 million Birr.

4. National Insurance Company of Ethiopia (NICE).

Founded back in October 1994, the National Insurance Company of Ethiopia (NICE) is the first private insurance company in Ethiopia. Since then with a presence across the country, it has grown into a major player in the country’s financial sector.

Headquartered in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and with 38 contact office branches (4 located in Addis Ababa) throughout the country, the company has an accumulated capital of around 100,000,000 Birr. When we put it another way that is 10000 shares of 1000 Birr per value each.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the National Insurance Company of Ethiopia (NICE).

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the National Insurance Company of Ethiopia (NICE):

  • Car, property, and potentially other general insurance options.
  • Non-life (general) insurance products, which are conventional and innovative.
  • Extensive branch network: 43 branches and 7 contact offices.
  • Uses modern technology and professional staff to provide superior services.

The National Insurance Company of Ethiopia, also known as NICE, with a professional Actuary who analyzes data to assess risk and calculate premiums, operates as a private company — much like many real estates, for instance Addis Way. In addition to that, it does not have any backup from the government.

As of 2024, the paid up capital of the National Insurance Company of Ethiopia is 80,383,216 Birr. it achieved this by adhering to the law of minimum shareholding of 50 shares, and the maximum allowed shareholding capital of 5%. Mind that the shareholding is permitted for Ethiopian Nationals only.

5. Lion Insurance Company (Ethiopia).

Founded back in June 2007, Lion Insurance Company is a private insurer with a broad public shareholder base of over 300 business men and women. The unique feature of this company is that it is one of the highest capitalized in the sector at its founding.

When it was first launched, paid up capital of the Lion Insurance Company was over 16 million Birr, and with a subscribed capital of around 66.4 million Birr. As of 2024, the company’s paid up capital has grown to over 100 million Birr, and with a subscribed capital of 200 million Birr.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the Lion Insurance Company (Ethiopia).

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the Lion Insurance Company (Ethiopia):

  • Life Assurance products or perils for unexpected situations.
  • General Non-Life Insurance policy coverages in the areas like motor vehicles, and property damage.
  • Potentially agriculture insurance depending on specific offerings.
  • It comes with no limits on the maximum amount it will pay you for a covered loss.

In a nutshell, with a strong financial performance and focus on expanding product lines via accessible broadcast promotions like EBS, EBC, and others, Lion Insurance Company is in a competitive position in the Ethiopian insurance market. Still, there’s no information on how many branch networks it has, or if it is supported by the government.

Again, don’t forget the fact that we talked earlier. In 2002, the United Insurance Company merged with Lion Insurance Company. Following the merger, plus  the 7th extraordinary general meeting by the 467 shareholders of both sides, its capital has grown to 250 million Birr.

6. Oromia Insurance Company (OIC). 

Founded back in January 26, 2009, Oromia Insurance Company (OIC) is a fast-growing general insurance provider in the Oromia region of Ethiopia like Adama. The company is not getting back-ups from the government, but they do have the support of two major commercial banks of Ethioia.

Licensed by the National Bank of Ethiopia, and founded by 540 shareholders, it was formed with a paid up capital of 26 million Birr, and a subscribed capital of 85 million Birr. In 2016/17 FY, the OIC reached 840 shareholders. And its paid up capital was 155.2 million Birr, and its subscribed capital was 250 million Birr.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the Oromia Insurance Company (OIC).

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the Oromia Insurance Company (OIC):

  • Agricultural insurance services for farmers.
  • Life insurance peril policy coverage during an event or cause of loss (operations started in 2012).
  • Microinsurance services for entrepreneurs.
  • Non-life insurance products for motor, property, and other claims of a formal request payment after a covered loss.

In a nutshell, the Oromia Insurance Bank boasts a diverse shareholder base of individuals, diversified cooperatives, and even commercial banks. Plus, it is offering Microinsurance, and Micro insurance products (like crops, and livestock) starting from 2010, which is after one year of its establishment.

With a reliable financial capacity launch made up of 1,600,000 low income farmers through their social cooperative unions, it makes OIC the first of its kind to mobilize such a large amount of paid up capital in the insurance industry. As of 2024, it has 38 branch offices and 3 contact locations throughout Ethiopia.

7. Nib Insurance S.Co.

Founded back in May 02, 2002, Nib Insurance S.Co. has grown from a small operation to over 42 branches across Ethiopia. The company offers various motor, property, life assurance, and marine cargo insurance products to its clients.

Like big international insurance companies, for instance Irish Insurance Corporation (IC), which increased its total assets by 0.3% (€1.2 billion) during Q4 2023, Nib Insurance is also doing its best to be the leading position in the local insurance market.

Nib Insurance Company, initially, was formed by 658 shareholders, an authorized capital of 50 million Birr, and a paid up capital of 14 million Birr. Once started with a small staff size of less than 50, in 2024, the paid up capital of NIC reached 250 million Birr with a total of 1,014 shareholders.

The Features and Types of Services offered by the Nib Insurance S.Co.

Here’s the insurance features and types of services offered by the Nib Insurance S.Co.:

  • Life insurance in the forms of individual and group plans.
  • General non-life insurance like motor insurance (both personal and commercial), and property insurance (fire, burglary, etc.). 
  • A wide range of other insurance products as a Carrier like Engineering insurance, and Travel health insurance
  • Special coverage like: crop insurance, terrorism insurance, and political violence insurance.

In a nutshell, Nib Insurance is focusing on being a customer-centric company in Ethiopia by providing reliable and high-quality options. It is committed to core values of transparency, and integrity. And of course, in exchange for their coverage, you have to pay them a premium periodic payment.

With a motto of “Your Intelligent Choice,”  and an employee size of 416, NIC pursues its operations through its head office, and 42 branches. Among the 42 branches, 27 of them are located in Sheger. What’s more, the company is also creating job opportunities for agents in Ethiopia and the alike.

KEY Considerations When Choosing an Insurance Company of Ethiopia in 2024

The Ethiopian financial sector started a long time ago as a form of “iqqubs“, “iddirs” and “mahbers.” That is where people gather together in order to save and access borrowings (like for emergency matters) through a pool of funds done mostly in Saturday.

Historically, the Bank of Abyssinia, which was owned by the Bank of Egypt, was the first to begin modernized insurance services in 1905. The idea was to transact insurance as an agent of a foreign insurance company. They did that by underwriting fire and marine insurance policies.

As of 2024, the sum assets of Ethiopian insurance companies is 11.3 Billion Birr with a total capital of 2.97 Billion Birr. Not only that, but also the number of insurance branch offices has reached 424 with 13% growth from the last year. This is where things get serious when it comes to going after the best one out there

That’s why below I’ve broken down some key points for you in order to help you consider different aspects of insurance companies (as I have studied finance in college — which wasn’t helped much though, honestly) that provide end-to-end coverages. Let’s get straight into them!

1. The Wide Range of Offered Insurance Services:

  • Life
  • Health
  • Agriculture
  • Engineering
  • Property
  • Motor

2. Insurance Coverage Details and Limitations:

It’s important to carefully read the policy documents or endorsements (amendment that adds or changes coverage to your existing policy) of any insurance company you consider. Look for:

  • Exclusions that are specifically mentioned in the policy.
  • Sub-limits within a policy regarding coverage amounts for certain events or incidents.
  • Deductible amount you’ll pay initially before the insurance kicks in.

3. Look for Customer Service Reputation:

  • Look for online reviews and testimonials about customer service experiences from an Insured, a person or entity who is covered by the insurance policy.
  • Inquire about available channels for communication and responsiveness, like phone, email, live chat, post office number, etc.

4. Claim Settlement Process with Steps:

  • For claims, get to inquire about necessary documents.
  • For claim settlement, also ask about the step-by-step processes of filling, and the turnaround time.

5. Financial Stability of the Company:

  • Identify an exclusion compensation that is not covered by your insurance policy.
  • To understand the insurance company’s solvency, check financial statement reports from the National Bank of Ethiopia.

Other TIPS for you includes:

  • Consider factors like your specific needs and budget.
  • Looking for companies with a good reputation for innovation and digital services.
  • Asking insurance agents questions and clarify any doubts you have.
  • Comparing competitive price quotes from multiple companies for the same type and level of coverage.

Overall Judge:

Overall, by 2016, there were 17 insurance companies in Ethiopia. From those, 1 is government owned, 8 of them are general only, and 9 of them are composite (general & long-term). At that time, there were also +1,950 registered insurance sales agents, 97 loss assessors, 53 brokers, 2 surveyors, and 2 reinsurance companies.

So yeah, picking the right insurance company in 2024 can feel overwhelming at first. However, I’m here to assure you that it doesn’t have to be. You just need to take some time to compare plans and get quotes from different insurers out there.

The local insurance industry is growing rapidly, with new-and-up-comer players entering this lucrative market and a wider range of services becoming available right in front of you. As a preparation, a few trends to watch for in 2024 are:

1. Increased focus on digital solutions: In the coming years, expect to see more online options for getting quotes, managing policies, and filing claims.

2. The growth of microinsurance: This is a good choice for low-income earners because it offers affordable coverage for essential needs.

3. More emphasis on customer service: Ethiopian insurance companies will likely compete on the quality of their customer service experience more than ever before.

In short, before you commit, doing a thorough research in order to make an informed decision will ensure you get the top-notch insurance coverage that you need at a price that fits your budget. And that’s also true for real estates in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Remember, insurance is all about protecting yourself financially at the end of the day, so don’t settle for the first option that you get your hands on! Before all else, understand your specific needs, and then compare companies to find the best fits.

Please, share your story if you have had a positive or negative experience with an insurance company in Ethiopia. I would like to know in the comment section below! Thanks!!!

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