Grab-backed digital bank GX Bank Berhad (GXBank), Zurich General Insurance Malaysia Berhad and Zurich Life Insurance Malaysia Berhad, have jointly announced their ten-year exclusive bancassurance tripartite partnership to co-create micro protection products for underserved Malaysians.

The duo said in a statement on Monday that leveraging intuitive technology and data-driven insights, GXBank will identify customer pain points, and work with Zurich Malaysia to co-create innovative digital insurance products that are simple, user-friendly and affordable.

The first product, set to be introduced by GXBank and Zurich Malaysia in the third quarter of the year, aims to protect underserved individuals from unauthorized transactions resulting from cyber-crime, as well as transactions initiated by electronic scam messages.

Pei-Si Lai, Chief Executive Officer, GXBank, shared that the partnership with Zurich Malaysia aligns with the bank’s commitment to provide customized banking solutions for the underserved Malaysians.

According to her, the partnership enables them to address safety pain points regarding digital banking, and safeguard Malaysians against life and financial uncertainties.

“As a young digital bank, we are excited to partner with Zurich Malaysia who has a presence in 200 countries and is at the forefront of transforming insurance services,

“Together, we hope to fractionalize insurance and make it affordable for every Malaysian,” she added.

Meanwhile, Junior Cho, Country Chief Executive Officer / Head of Zurich Malaysia, said that for many, the need for insurance protection is often weighed between the affordability and their financial standing.

Coupled with the lack of understanding of the need for insurance protection, he said these are the main reasons why the populace, especially the financially vulnerable, remain uninsured.

“This long-term partnership with GXBank enables us to be flexible and agile in how we can co-create relevant affordable insurance products,

“Together, we look forward to instilling confidence and empower Malaysians to take charge of their financial future, and support Malaysians in caring for what truly matters in their lives,” he added.

Cited a 2023 survey by PwC, the statement noted that a worrying 84 percent of the uninsured population are between 18-34 years old – Malaysians in their prime years of life.

The duo opined that the statistics are alarming, especially 58 percent of adults in Malaysia do not have any life or takaful insurance.

They noted the situation is exacerbated by the rising cyber-crimes in the country – online fraud cases have doubledover five years from 2019 to 2023, with losses in 2023 (January to November) estimated at a staggering MYR 1.3 billion ($270 million) .

The need for protection is more important than ever, especially with the increasingly volatile events in the
world today, said the statement.

Through this partnership, both Lai and Cho hope to bridge the gap and facilitate more affordable insurance products without imposing additional financial burden on already tight budgets.

GXBank is Malaysia’s first digital bank that commenced operation on 1 September 2023.

The bank is a subsidiary of GXS Bank Pte. Ltd., – the digital bank joint venture between Grab Holdings Limited and Singapore Telecommunications Limited (Singtel) – and a consortium of other Malaysian investors, including Kuok Group.

Zurich Malaysia is a collective reference term for the Zurich Insurance Group (Zurich) business subsidiaries operating in Malaysia: Zurich General Insurance Malaysia Berhad, Zurich Life Insurance Malaysia Berhad, Zurich General Takaful Malaysia Berhad and Zurich Takaful Malaysia Berhad.

The firm offers a broad range of comprehensive insurance and takaful solutions.

GXBank on track to establish regional center of excellence for shared services in Malaysia