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Key Metrics To Assess A Life Insurance Business And Here’S Where Lic Stands

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All eyes on Dalal Street are on the upcoming mega initial public offering (IPO) of the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC). The proposed initial share sale of the state-run life insurance behemoth will be the largest the country has seen so far. The IPO, through which the government will likely raise Rs 21,000 crore by offloading 3.5 percent of its 100 percent stake, will likely hit the Street early next month.

LIC’s IPO is likely to take the top spot in terms of size from Paytm parent One97 Communications, whose Rs 18,300-crore share sale in November failed to attract the kind of investor response enjoyed by most primary market offerings in November 2021.

Company Size (in crore rupees)
Paytm 18,300
Coal-India 15,475
Reliance Power 11,700
GIC 11,373
SBI Cards 10,350
New India Insurance 9,600
DLF

9,187

LIC’s IPO comes amid intense competition in the industry, with the state-run company losing market share to private sector peers over the past few years.

Here’s a look at some of the biggest strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for LIC:

Strengths Weaknesses
Brand name, vast portfolio, market share, inorganic growth, high disposable income Highly competitive industry, lack of investment in tech, loss-making investments in past
Opportunities threats
Product portfolio expansion, ability to spend heavily on ads Pandemic, assumptions may not materialize, interest rate fluctuations may affect profitability

Here’s how LIC fares among peers on five key metrics:

Market-share

LIC has a market share of more than 66 percent. However, it has been losing market share to private sector peers in the recent past.

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From April 2021 to January 2022, LIC lost 500 basis points in market share to the private life insurance industry. HDFC Life gained a market share of 112 basis points, SBI Life of 178 basis points, ICICI Prudential Life of 38 basis points and Max Life of 11 basis points during this period.

Network

LIC has the strongest network of agents in the country. As of March 2021, the state-run life insurer had more than 13.5 lakh agents across the country.

New premium business

A new business premium – or the premium acquired from new policies in a given period – is an important measure of profitability for insurance companies.

Solvency ratio

The solvency ratio indicates an insurer’s ability to meet its long-term debt obligations. An insurer with a high solvency ratio has more chances of meeting its policy-related liabilities.

Profit after tax

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