Hollard has had purpose at its core from its inception as a family business 41 years ago. The Enthoven family had a vision to build a company with a head and a heart – one that would be as conscious of its impact on society as it was about its profit motive and one that would think differently in order to make a difference.
It helped that they were already in the business of helping society move forward. Insurance is, after all, at its core a fundamental enabler of industrial progress and an instrument for social good. By ensuring that potentially catastrophic or devastating setbacks are mitigated, Hollard enables people to take the risks that must be taken if we are to progress as a society.
From the beginning, Hollard has operated in a way that understands that people are not just cogs in the profit machine and that the business exists within a society that has challenges – which they believe the business should assist in resolving. They also believe that shareholders are not the only important stakeholders – but that the business also has a responsibility to its people (dubbed Hollardites), customers, partners and society.
This fundamental ethos is woven into the fabric of Hollard and informs everything they do. They have numerous social responsibility programmes, all many identified and championed by Hollardites with the backing of the company. They also have a policy of measuring social dividends alongside financial dividends.
Saks Ntombela, Group Chief Executive Officer
The Hollard’s social dividend framework was born 16 years ago, when Hollard the leadership team formulated a vision and a set of aims designed to help the company grow beyond 2020 in a sustainable and inclusive way. Their quest to build a better business was entirely in sync with their shareholders, who had articulated their own desire to act as a catalyst for positive and enduring change.
While the Enthovens retain a majority shareholding, the company’s shareholders now also include Tokio Marine, one of the world’s largest insurers and; Bushwillow Investments, a Broad-based Black Employment Equity grouping. All three shareholders share the vision of growing a socially responsible and sustainable business. In fact, one of the reasons that Tokio Marine was welcomed as a shareholder in 2018 was that its organisational purpose is to be a Good company, which resonated with Hollard.
In 2015, Hollard set about formally setting out their purpose in a way that everyone in a growing, diverse and increasingly geographically disparate organisation could understand, articulate and embrace at a personal, team and organisational level.
Hollard’s purpose is to enable more people to create and secure a better future. And while strategy may change as the business environment changes, this purpose is enduring.
The belief that Hollard will do well by doing good has paid off so far. The company has grown into South Africa’s largest privately-owned insurance group. This has been via a mixture of organic growth and acquisition. Recently they spun off Hollard International – an entity housing their African operations outside of South Africa and a nascent operation in the Philippines – into a separate, sister company.
Today, the Hollard Insurance Group in South Africa includes four insurance licences and an investment management license. While statutory reporting is done in the appropriate licenses, the company is actually organised into two businesses – Hollard Insure and Hollard Life Solutions, each with its own CEO, supported by a number of centres-of-excellence which operate at a Group Level.
Hollard Insure is focused on Corporate & Commercial insurance, supported by personal lines, driven largely through independent intermediaries, while Hollard Life Solutions focuses on the emerging, mass, and middle markets and distributes a broad range of financial service products (including insurance, loans and savings products) through traditional and alternative channels, as well as a number of significant distribution partnerships.
Throughout their 41-year journey, Hollard has drawn inspiration from their founder’s pioneering spirit, while remaining genuine and down to earth. Everything that they do, every day, helps society to make progress. And they do carry it out “while serving as a catalyst for positive and enduring change” – words that are included in their vision statement and lived every day by staff embracing the Hollard Way.
Milestones In the History of Hollard
• A partnership with a new legal insurance company called Legalwise in 1991 (today a large insurer in its own right)
• The formation of the Life Company in 1993 (until that point Hollard had been a short term insurer only)
• The acquisition of approximately 60 000 motor insurance policies as IGI collapsed in 1993
• The creation of SA’s first full-service direct Life insurer in 1997
• The acquisition of Crusader Life also in 1997
• A partnership with Edcon, then SA’s largest fashion retailer in 1999
• Our Offshore investme ts in Pakistan (1998 – since exited), India, Australia (now a major Australian insurance group separate from Hollard South Africa) in 1999,
Mozambique (2001), Namibia (2003), India (2004 – since exited), Botswana (2005),
China (2007 – since exited), Zambia (2010), Ghana (2016), Philippines (2016), Indonesia (2016 – since exited)
• The acquisition of Fedsure Credit Life (2001) and Fedgen (2002)
• An insurance partnership with Kaizer Chiefs in 2001 – ended in 2021
• The re-acquisition of Etana in 2014, a commercial insurance undertaking spun out of Hollard in 2008
• The acquisition of Regent in 2018
• The purchase of 22,5% stake in Hollard SA and Hollard International by Tokio Marine, one of the world’s largest insurance groups and Japan’s oldest insurer, in 2018