Insurance and Mobile: the future of aYo


  1. What need did you identify in the market that led to the creation of this product?

aYo Uganda is a locally registered and initially wholly owned subsidiary of aYo Holdings Limited, a  joint venture between MTN Group and MMI Holdings. It is looking to assist to create a future where everyone in Uganda uses insurance. Through making insurance relevant, accessible and easy to use by means of digital engagement and initially through the mobile phone, aYo aims to assist with financial inclusion in the country.


With very low insurance penetration, high and growing mobile usage and good regulation, Uganda presented a good growth opportunity. A partnership with MTN Uganda who has a trusted relationship with many clients and also a great mobile money capability made the decision to enter Uganda even easier.


The initial products in the market each leverage existing behavior of mobile customers with aYo Send with Care related to mobile money and aYo Recharge with Care to airtime recharge. The offerings currently cater for life cover and accidental hospitalisation (not illness) and have real time cover buildups. Cover is provided for shorter periods also – ranging between 30 and 120 days and there is premium flexibility to allow for affordability.


In creating a relevant offering, aYo reviewed the Ugandan insurance landscape and identified the need to build trust through education and awareness of insurance and simplifying the terms and conditions of contracts as well as ease to enroll and engage. The events covered were also determined through research and consumer testing.


Additional cover options or products and changes may be affected going forward based on our growing understanding of consumer needs based on our experience, growing capability and continued engagement and research.


  1. How are claims triggered?

As an MTN subscriber and an aYo client, claims are initiated on USSD by dialling *296#. Upon receipt of this notification one of our claims consultants will telephonically engage with either the policyholder or beneficiary to process the claim. In certain circumstances supporting documentation may be required to further validate and process the claim.


  1. What is the (product) penetration currently-what has been the public’s response so far?

We formally launched to the Ugandan media in mid-January 2017 and since then we have made good inroads in converting MTN subscribers across segments into aYo clients (using both of our products). We have had growing customer enrolment every month with especially pleasing growth in client self-signups and referrals.

The overall market response has been positive and continues to be very promising as education and awareness grows.


  1. Why was this particular mode of distribution (through a telecom) chosen?

One of the biggest contributors to the high cost of traditional insurance solutions is the high distribution cost. Distributing, fulfilment and engagement in partnership with an established telecom provider also assists in reaching clients and making insurance accessible to further our insurance inclusion vision.


  1. Given your current marketing campaign, what is your long term strategy for this product and how do you see this growing over the next 3-5 years?

We are currently running with the Win with aYo promotion which affords our customers (new and existing) the opportunity to win MTN airtime instantly as well as be entered into a grand prize draw to win cash at the end of the promotion. The chance to win instant airtime as well as entry into the draw occurs with all transactional engagement with aYo.


We rely on a complete 360 degree integrated marketing communications strategy, relevant to each of the identified target markets. People do not wake up in the morning wanting to buy insurance; that fact is not going away, however millions of consumers wake up every morning worried about risk. aYo will continue to engage these consumers to help them understand the value of solutions that protect or assist them with the selected risks we focus on.


We anticipate significant growth month on month & year on year moving forward. We will continue to adapt our marketing campaigns and product offering to ensure that over the next three to five years we are able to make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of our consumers and contribute to a future where everyone uses, and benefits from, insurance.


6.  Are customers who currently do not use the MTN platform and MTN Mobile Money in particular a target for you and if so, how do you intend for them to become consumers?

Our initial focus is primarily MTN clients and their dependents. We may explore other opportunities in the medium to long term. At this stage, we are encouraged by the strong MTN customer value proposition and the ease with which clients can become MTN clients.