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FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » CORPORATE CHRONICLE™ » India's Insurance Regulator rejects AIA Lanka CEO - Indian - Shah Rouf as TATA-AIA MD citing governance and accounting lapses in Romania- Report

India's Insurance Regulator rejects AIA Lanka CEO - Indian - Shah Rouf as TATA-AIA MD citing governance and accounting lapses in Romania- Report

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StockGuru

StockGuru
Senior Manager - Equity Analytics
Senior Manager - Equity Analytics

Oct. 11, 2014 (LBT) - India's Insurance Regulator - The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) has recently rejected the appointment as Sri Lanka's AIA Insurance Lanka PLC (CTCE) Chief Executive Officer Shah Rouf as Managing Director and CEO of Tata AIA Life Insurance, citing his governance and accounting lapses during his tenure as the head of Aviva in Romania.

Accordingly IRDA has rejected Rouf's appointment after finding out Rouf's failures, which, a person in the know said, the joint venture between Tata Sons and AIA International did not mention in its filing for approval, an Indian report said.Report quoted sources adding Rouf 's candidature was rejected after IRDA learnt that the regulator in Romania had barred him from insurance industry on governance and accounting failures.

Rouf, is still the CEO of AIA Sri Lanka, and was brought in as CEO designate of Tata AIA Life after M Suresh quit the firm as Managing Director and CEO in March. His appointment was subject to regulatory approval.

Rouf, has about 18 years of experience in the insurance industry, was with Aviva NDB Insurance in Sri Lanka, before it was acquired by AIA Group in December 2012 and was retained by new AIA. Shah Rouf serves currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the Company. He has also functioned as the Managing Director of of AIA Lanka (former AVIVA Insurance Lanka) from March 2010 to June 2013. He counts over 20 years of experience in the industry, having held senior management positions in both Life and Non-life insurance in the UK, Middle East, India and continental Europe. Prior to his appointment in the Company, he was the CEO of Aviva Romania and Chief Distribution Officer, Central and Eastern Europe for Aviva. He has concluded his academic studies at the London School of Economics and has a BA (Hons) and a M.Sc. degree in Economics. He is an Associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute, UK.

Accordingly Sri Lankan Insurance Industry analysts and experts are questioning how Shah Rouf was appointed to head Sri Lanka's AIA and former AVIVA operations through approval by Sri Lankan Insurance Regulator few years ago without a background check by Insurance Regulator - Insurance Board of Sri Lanka (IBSL).

"Sri Lankan Insurance Regulator too should do a background check of Shah Rouf now" an Insurance Industry expert said.However Sri Lanka's Insurance Regulator was not available for comment at the time of this report.

Being the second largest listed private insurer in the Sri Lanka with a a market capitalization of over Rs.9 billion with 30 million Ordinary Voting Shares AIA Insurance Lanka PLC's (CTCE) subsidiaries' (Group) revenue for the six months ended 30 June 2014 amounted to LRs. 6,768 million down 1 per cent from the previous year. It was mainly caused by the reduction in investment yields. Gross Written Premium (GWP) income of the composite business grew by 5 per cent to Rs. 4,948 million.

Conventional life products achieved a GWP of Rs. 2,739 million, up 17 per cent compared with the first half of 2013 and contributing 78 per cent of the overall life GWP. Total GWP of the overall life business grew by 5 per cent to Rs. 3,516 million while GWP of general insurance increased by 3 per cent to Rs. 1,432 million.

The Group’s consolidated profit after tax was Rs. 146 million for the six months ended 30 June 2014, compared with Rs. 195 million of the first half of 2013 which excluded rebranding spend, a one-off item in 2013. Consolidated profit after tax reported excludes the surplus from the long-term insurance business which is determined annually after the year-end actuarial valuation, and according to the company it will be included in the full-year results for the financial year ending December 2014.

AIA Holdings Lanka (Private) Limited has 26,182,162 voting shares of AIA Lanka (CTCE) with a 87.27% stajke and AIA Company Limited has 2,964,117 voting shares of AIA Lanka with a 9.88% stake tghus AIA International group controlling Sri Lanka's AIA Insurance Lanka PLC (CTCE).

AIA International holds 26% in India's Tata AIA Life, which is the maximum permissible in the sector under the current foreign direct investment norms, with Tata Sons holding the rest.

Tata AIA Life registered 22.47 per cent year-on-year drop in new business premium income last fiscal when the overall life insurance industry reported 11.56% jump in new premiums.

http://lankabusinesstoday.com/news/world/7766-indias-insurance-regulator-rejects-aia-lanka-ceo-shah-rouf-as-tata-aia-md-citing-governance-and-accounting-lapses-in-romania-report

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