African insurtech aYo Holdings, which is 100% owned by telecommunications giant MTN, has handed the chief executive of its Ghana operation an additional role within the aYo Group as it looks to drive rapid growth across the continent.
In addition to his role as CEO of aYo Ghana, Francis Gota will now also oversee the group’s business development for Uganda and Zambia. In this role, he will support his fellow CEOs as they look to accelerate aYo’s vision of ensuring all Africans have access to affordable, easy and accessible life and hospital cover.
“Francis is a seasoned leader and has built to date the most successful of aYo’s subsidiaries. We trust that his experience and insights gained in Ghana will unlock greater value in the other markets as well, enabling them to reach scale from both a revenue and active customer base perspective,” said Botha.
aYo launched in Uganda in January 2017, and has since started operations in Ghana, Zambia and Côte d’Ivoire. This rapid expansion has seen the company evolve into a major player in the African microinsurance market, using a ‘pay as you go’ insurance model that gives policyholders the flexibility to have the cover they need at any given time.
Gota said there was a ‘significant opportunity’ to drive growth in aYo’s existing markets. “It’s important to realise that each market has its own nuances, and we can’t take a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Having said that, we’re seeing a clear increase in awareness of financial service products like microinsurance, and we can take advantage on this to rapidly increase the number of Africans who are covered,” he said.
Insurtechs like aYo develop and distribute affordable, rapidly underwritten financial protection products providing cover for relatively short periods of time – like hospital cover for accidents and general illness, for example. As such, it is a powerful enabler of financial inclusion in African markets, providing a much-needed social safety net that helps vulnerable people and particularly people with low or irregular incomes to stay afloat when the unexpected happens.