São Paulo, Brazil, March 28, 2011—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, has signed an agreement with American
Life, an insurance company in Brazil, to launch a life insurance product
targeting low-income families in the country.
IFC’s advisory services to American Life will start with a business planning
effort, followed by a pilot to test and refine the product. The expansion
phase is scheduled for 2012. The target market for microinsurance in Brazil
is composed of 128 million people whose families earn less than $800 a
month. Despite the size of the market, expansion thus far has been modest
and has not penetrated low-income populations.
“American Life is a Brazilian insurance company that offers life insurance
to niche segments not covered by most large insurance companies. Building
a strong presence in the microinsurance space is now among our high priorities,”
said Pedro de Freitas, Head of American Life. Using flexibility and innovation,
American Life has achieved robust growth, increasing its income six-fold
during the past six years. Currently, the company insures close to a million
“This project is aligned with IFC’s strategy in Brazil, and its Global
Financial Markets strategy, which among other objectives, focuses on increasing
access to finance for low-income segments,” said Loy Pires, IFC Country
Manager for Brazil. “We acknowledge the importance of insurance products
for low-income families in managing risks, and through the partnership
with American Life, we expect to provide relevant contribution to the Brazilian
microinsurance space and to develop innovative ways to reach the base of
the pyramid.” This pioneering effort will also have a demonstration effect,
enticing other insurance firms to enter this segment.
IFC’s strategy in Brazil is also aimed to strengthen infrastructure and
public services, including health and education, by increasing private
sector participation. Other key areas include improving the investment
climate, promoting socially and environmentally sustainable practices,
helping small businesses join the formal economy, and strengthening private
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create
opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do
so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply
essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering
advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global
economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion
in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
For more information about American Life, visit: www.alseg.com.br.