Sagicor’s two operations in the Cayman Islands will come under one roof at the Harbour Place this year.
Speaking at company’s motivational Blast Off 2009 event, which was themed ‘Emerging Stronger, Together’, Sagicor Life Country Manager Claudette Saint-Reid praised her company’s strong 49 per cent growth over the past four years.
‘But whilst we are applauding our Sagicor Life Team, we are mindful of the fact that if we are to grow the brand and emerge as the dominant financial and general insurance provider in the Cayman Islands, we must integrate all of Sagicor within the Cayman Islands,’ she said.
Mrs. Saint-Reid said the two local entities of the company had major differences in their corporate cultures, since most people come to buy home, health and vehicle insurance, while life insurance is sold and not bought.
‘But I believe there are more ties that bind us than those that divide us,’ she said. ‘And they are the ones that we will focus on to deliver, for the first time at last, a seamless Sagicor experience for all our clients, and for all of the Cayman Islands.’
Sagicor General Senior Vice President Michael Gayle said it was important to unify the brand to present one face to the public.
‘We will become all one family,’ he said. ‘That’s the direction I see us going: one Sagicor, working together like a family.’
Mr. Gayle said Sagicor’s objective was to become the premier insurance company in the Cayman Islands, and that having all of Sagicor’s operations under one roof would help achieve that goal.
‘Working together, we will emerge stronger,’ he said.
Sagicor Life President and CEO Michael Fraser said the merging of the two Sagicor entities here in Cayman was a natural development and a response to the kind of change taking place in the world. He added that the challenges presented by the global financial crisis also necessitated change.
‘It cannot be business as usual,’ he said. ‘No matter what business you are in, you’re going to have to change the way you do things in the future.’
Mr. Fraser said that going forward, what was important for businesses was the quality of their products or services, not their size.
‘We have a mantra that says we are going to shed weight where we don’t need that weight,’ he said, adding that Sagicor Life’s moving over to Harbour Place to share offices and as many of the back office operations as possible was a way for the company to shed weight. As a result, the company would be able to offer better products at better prices.
The Blast Off event also included a guest motivational speaker, K. Barrington Thomas, who reminded attendees that ‘milk and honey is something you have to work for’.
‘[Wealth] is no longer falling from the sky and if you don’t know that yet, you’re going to find out soon,’ he said, as he encouraged the audience to ‘grow every day or perish’.
The event also featured several dance performances by the KRI Performing Arts group, and the launch of a new product – the Triple Protector Plan – by Sagicor Life VP Mark Chisholm.
Speaking after the event, Mr. Gayle said the timeline for the Sagicor Life employees joining the Sagicor General staff at Harbour Place depended on how quickly the fit-out of the office could be completed.
Mrs. Saint-Reid said the building Sagicor Life occupies on North Church Street, which the company owns, would be retained and the space rented out after it was vacated by her employees.