Sari Sari Store PhilippinesBusiness Features

AXA Philippines, GrowSari offer free insurance to MSMEs

Insurance company AXA Philippines and tech-enabled B2B platform for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) GrowSari will start offering free insurance to sari-sari store (neighborhood store) owners, as well as canteen and roadside owners.

The initiative aims to provide informal retailers with coverage that will help their families during emergencies. The coverage includes a death benefit as well as a Daily Hospital Income (DHI) benefit in case of hospitalization.

Citing a report by World Bank, AXA Philippines and GrowSari said at least 81% of informal retailers like sari-sari stores suffered job losses at the height of the pandemic in 2020. With a relatively small capital, which they use to sustain daily operations, these micro-enterprises are badly affected when the owner gets sick or hospitalized, especially when this is their main source of income.

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“Our partnership with GrowSari is in line with our advocacy of providing better protection and financial literacy among micro, small, and medium enterprise owners. Through this partnership, we hope we can better the lives of Filipino entrepreneurs amid this pandemic and beyond,” Alok Rungta, chief of Retail Proposition, AXA Philippines, said in a media release.

Death, hospitalization benefits

The free insurance coverage is part of GrowSari’s Loyalty Program that is available to its Gold members who opt to be part of the program. It offers life insurance worth P35,000, as well as a DHI benefit amounting to P1,500 for three days of confinement. The DHI helps alleviate the burden of income loss should the beneficiary need to be confined in the hospital.

“It’s important, in terms of financial inclusion to drive awareness and education among MSMEs such as sari-sari store owners, to let them know that there are a lot of financial products that can help them during health emergencies,” said Mai Mai Punzalan, chief marketing officer, GrowSari. “We are happy to have this partnership with AXA Philippines because their mission of promoting health and protection is aligned with the more secure future we envision for sari-sari store owners.”

From only 1,000 members in 2018, GrowSari’s members grew to 50,000 at the height of the pandemic in 2020 and doubled in number in 2021 to 100,000 active stores in 220 municipalities. The partnership with AXA has so far protected over a thousand GrowSari members, as more sari-sari store owners embrace the importance of insurance in ensuring a more secure and safer future for their families.