Press release -
Discovery and AIA to establish a pan-Asian health InsurTech business
Johannesburg, 15 February 2022 - Discovery Limited ("Discovery") and AIA Group (“AIA”) today announced the establishment of a pan-Asian health InsurTech business that will be named Amplify Health. The new entity is expected to launch in April 2022 with the aim of becoming Asia’s leading digital health technology and integrated solutions business.
The partnership will operate as a joint venture (“JV”) in Asia, excluding China, Hong Kong and Macau, where Discovery has an exclusive partnership with the Ping An Group through its shareholding in Ping An Health Insurance. It will provide a range of state-of-the-art health technology, intellectual property (“IP”) and expertise to AIA’s rapidly growing health insurance businesses and will also build and deliver health and wellness InsurTech products and services to third parties across the region.
AIA is the leading pan-Asian private medical insurer and provides life, health and wellness solutions to the holders of more than 39 million individual policies and over 16 million members of group insurance schemes. Amplify Health is central to AIA Group’s strategy to grow its health business. The JV has been established with the vision of transforming how individuals, corporates, payors, and providers experience and manage health insurance and healthcare delivery, improving the health and wellness outcomes of patients and communities across Asia.
The creation of Amplify Health builds on the near 10-year working relationship between Discovery and AIA Group, which to date has focused on the integration of AIA’s life insurance products with AIA Vitality across AIA’s businesses in Asia. The success of the existing partnership between Discovery and AIA, which is reflected in the growth of AIA Vitality since its launch in 2013, now present in 10 markets across Asia, will enhance the JV. The partnership is based on Discovery’s Shared-value Insurance model and will continue alongside Amplify Health – it forms a powerful platform for the new company and the integration of health and wellness capabilities.
The JV aligns with the emerging market scale in Asia and will be well positioned to respond to the market trends impacting the health and wellness service industries in Asia, namely ageing populations, increased digital adoption and healthcare supply constraints.
Total healthcare expenditure across AIA’s markets is expected to exceed US$4 trillion in 2030. By this time, there will be 2.6 billion people in the middle classes in Asia, who will be significantly more engaged with improving their personal health than previous generations. Consumers will continue to focus on wellness and disease prevention, leveraging technologies such as wearables, activity and fitness trackers, growing the market in Asia by more than double compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Digital healthcare adoption has accelerated because of the pandemic, with 96% of insurers in Asia-Pacific indicating that their members now use telehealth to access primary physician/general practitioner (GP) services. Adding to this, the population in parts of Asia is ageing, with close to 850 million people in the region predicted to be over the age of 60 by 2030. This unparalleled combination of shifting demographics, rising consumer expectations, accelerated digital adoption, new advancements in HealthTech and significant unmet service demand underpin the strategic importance of Amplify Health.
The JV brings together the best of both partners by combining Discovery’s unique and proven global healthcare technology, IP and health expertise with AIA’s brand, unrivalled distribution platform and decades of well-established execution capabilities across Asia.
“Over the past three decades, Discovery has built unique and powerful health insurance, wellness and health management capabilities, made up of considerable IP, technology, data analytics and subject matter experts. The relevance of these assets and our deployment track record are demonstrated by the successful application of our capabilities in other markets. All these learnings have manifested in an end-to-end Shared Value healthcare stack that will be shifted into Amplify to ensure that together with AIA we will build a significant business across the region and make a positive societal impact. Discovery and AIA have an exceptionally successful long-term relationship through AIA Vitality, and our organisations have completely aligned core purposes - this creates a powerful platform for Amplify Health,” says Adrian Gore, Discovery Chief Executive.
Amplify Health will be led by Dr Jonathan Broomberg, the former Chief Executive Officer of Discovery Health, and current Chief Executive Officer of Vitality Health International (VHI). VHI is a subsidiary of Discovery established in 2019 to coordinate and intensify the focus and resource allocation of Discovery’s emerging global health insurance initiatives.
Commenting on the establishment of Amplify Health in partnership with Discovery, Lee Yuan Siong, AIA Group Chief Executive and President, says “For more than a century AIA has been at the forefront of protecting our customers when they need us the most. As we look to the future, we see an urgent need for better, simpler and more affordable healthcare, and an expanding protection gap for the growing population in the region. These factors, combined with the fundamental drivers of growth in Asia, present an extraordinary opportunity. Amplify Health is the natural next step in our journey from payor to partner, enabling us to play a leading role in shaping the transformation of the development and delivery of healthcare in Asia. Discovery is a partner who is equally passionate about creating value for all stakeholders. I am certain that through Amplify Health we will go on to help millions more Asian families live Healthier, Longer, Better Lives.”
Amplify Health will be focused on servicing AIA businesses to drive improved operational and claims performance and will also serve and partner with other key healthcare system participants creating value for stakeholders across the healthcare value chain.
Subject to approval by the South African Reserve Bank, Discovery Group will own 25% of the JV’s equity, with 75% owned by AIA.
Notes to editors
About Discovery Group and Vitality Health International
Discovery Limited is a South African-founded financial services organisation that operates in the healthcare, life assurance, short-term insurance, savings and investment and wellness markets. Since inception in 1992, Discovery has been guided by a clear core purpose – to make people healthier and to enhance and protect their lives. This has manifested in its globally recognised Vitality Shared-Value insurance model, active in over 35 markets with over 20 million members. The model is exported and scaled through the Global Vitality Network, an alliance of some of the largest insurers across key markets including AIA (Asia), Ping An (China), Generali (Europe), Sumitomo (Japan), John Hancock (US), Manulife (Canada), among others.
In 2019 Vitality Health International (VHI) was established to coordinate and intensify focus and resource allocation to Discovery’s global emerging health insurance initiatives. With a vision to be the world’s leading global health insurer and provider of health InsurTech and services. In 2021 VHI introduced shared value health insurance to employer groups operating in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Zambia, as well as Travel for Treatment service to the rest of Africa.
Discovery’s investment over the past 30 years has facilitated a best in class fully integrated digital health ecosystem, that is now being leveraged by VHI applying shared-value health insurance across the globe to make people healthier and enhance and protect their lives.
Discovery trades on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange as DSY.
About AIA Group
AIA Group Limited and its subsidiaries (collectively “AIA” or the “Group”) comprise the largest independent publicly listed pan-Asian life insurance group. It has a presence in 18 markets – wholly-owned branches and subsidiaries in Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR5, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, New Zealand, the Philippines, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan (China), Vietnam, Brunei and Macau SAR6, and a 49 per cent joint venture in India.
The business that is now AIA was first established in Shanghai more than a century ago in 1919. It is a market leader in Asia (ex-Japan) based on life insurance premiums and holds leading positions across the majority of its markets. It had total assets of US$330 billion as of 30 June 2021.
AIA meets the long-term savings and protection needs of individuals by offering a range of products and services including life insurance, accident and health insurance and savings plans. The Group also provides employee benefits, credit life and pension services to corporate clients. Through an extensive network of agents, partners and employees across Asia, AIA serves the holders of more than 39 million individual policies and over 16 million participating members of group insurance schemes.
AIA Group Limited is listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited under the stock code “1299” with American Depositary Receipts (Level 1) traded on the over-the-counter market (ticker symbol: “AAGIY”).