South Africa-based financial services group MMI Holdings has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with India’s Birla Financial Services Group (ABFSG) to establish a health insurance joint venture in the country.

MMI, Aditya Birla

This will allow both the firms to use ABG’s market presence in the country and MMI’s proven strength in health and wellness.

The partnership will provide innovative health insurance products that will improve customer choice and add a new dimension to the current market offering in the country, MIM said.

MMI CEO Nicolaas Kruger said: "MMI considers India as an important strategic market for its international expansion strategy."

Under this partnership, MMI will initially hold a stake of 26% in the joint venture, the maximum share that a foreign partner allowed under the current Indian foreign direct investment norms. The company will be allowed to increase its share to up to 49% if the norms change in the future.

Aditya Birla Group chief executive (Financial Services) Ajay Srinivasan said: "Given ABFSG’s focus on building a retail presence across products, we foresee a huge potential to target the requirements of untapped customers and their families.

"Our partnership will give us the competitive edge given MMI’s expertise in the health insurance sector."

For the initiative, firms including FirstRand Bank India, Rand Merchant Bank and Webber Wentzel attorneys are serving as advisors to MMI.

Image: The new partnership will bring innovative health insurance products in Indian Market. Photo: courtesy of Stuart Miles/