Given the low penetration of financial products there is no competition between manufacturers and distributors, said the panel on Distributing Digital Footprints in the #OutlookMoney Conclave2018. But there is a caveat. That is the increasing importance of convenience for new age millennials, the panel members pointed out. This includes minimum paperwork and easy to access steps, which are of prime importance in this information era.
The panel which was chaired by the editor of Outlook Money had an engaging discussion on how manufactures and distributors can co-exist, instead of usual us vs them cliché.
“There is headroom for everybody to grow and the value for intermediation is still high”, said Abhijit Shah- Sr. VP and Head- Marketing, Digital and Customer experience, ICICI Prudential. The importance of the intermediaries was also stressed upon by Subrat Mohanty, Senior Executive VP, HDFC Life Insurance According to him, “Products like insurance, whose penetration is still very less in Indian markets, will need agents to bring the customer to the funnel”. Although, he agreed that the form and the pattern of the agents may change towards digitalization, thus re-emphasizing the importance of customer convenience.
Quoting one of the founders of twitter, Kunal Bajaj, CEO, Clearfunds said that “Convenience trumps everything’. Organisations like Clearfunds provides customers with the easy of operating.. This enables customers to operate through a single platform at a negligible fee.
Ashok Kumar E R, CEO and Co-founder of Scriptbox said that customers stick to websites like his that help them understand financial jargon.
The panel concluded that equal opportunities exist for both distributors and manufacturers due to large markets.