The New Age Risk Takers

Master Class
07 - 01 - 2020

Risk management critical for stable, sustainable business: Bhargav Dasgupta

Mar 24, 2020
Dasgupta said that new risks are emerging at a rapid pace that are threatening businesses
bhagav 900 x 600

With many new-age risks emerging that are threatening companies along with traditional risks, having a strong risk management framework would enable organisations to do business in a stable and sustainable manner.

“Risk Management is becoming even more critical day by day. And if you want to build an organization which is stable, sustainable over a long period of time, risk management becomes important,” Bhargav Dasgupta, Managing Director and CEO, ICICI Lombard General Insurance said while delivering his inaugural address at the India Risk Manger Awards (IRMA) 2020 in Mumbai recently.

Dasgupta said that new risks are emerging at a rapid pace that are threatening businesses. “We are constantly being bombarded by risks, both traditional and new age. At one end, last year, we saw floods across 13 states of India, which has never happened in the past. Last year was the wettest year for us in India. The economic losses that India suffered economic losses were roughly over Rs 40,000 crores. Unfortunately, only 8% of those were insured. On the other hand, incidences of cyber attacks, data breaches, ransomware and malware are becoming more and more prevalent. India alone witness more than 1800 devices being impacted per minute, last year due to such attacks. It's a remarkable number!” Dasgupta pointed out.

Unless companies adopt proper risk management techniques and remain prepared they could be caught unawares leading to huge losses. “What is more critical in also the suddenness and uniqueness of these attacks,” Dasgupta said.

He urged companies to work with their insurers to set up risk management and risk mitigation frameworks to keep themselves protected. “We must get proactive in setting processes to prevent risk incidents and work together to continuously promote risk culture. What's also important is to share learning with each other and from experts in the domain of risk management. If we have to counter this dual onslaught of old and new risks, we believe that the only way forward is for insurers to forge a partnership with corporate India. We need to work hand-in-hand in tandem, to share data, insights, perspectives and experiences to overcome this menace,” Dasgupta said.

The first step towards the industry-insurer partnership is already being forged. “Today, when we meet clients, our discussion is not about products or about rates. Our discussion is about working hand-in-hand with clients’ risk management challenges. Our discussions are about real-time risk monitoring using some of the onsite technology tools that we've developed and most importantly, about providing customized solutions specific to the client's needs. And I think for us this approach is working as we speak about 3000, corporate, large, small enterprises, embrace our solution,” Dasgupta said.

The role of ICICI Lombard is also changing as the new partnership is being forged. “IRMA is synonymous with our risk management journey at ICICI Lombard. It was around 2012-13 when we took a huge leap of faith into this space. It was definitely uncertain. Prior to this, our focus was limited to risk transfer, the traditional role that insurers play. But somehow we strongly believe that we could play a bigger role in managing the risk of clients. From being a risk financier or risk transfer partner, we wanted to be your risk management partner for India Inc,” Dasgupta said about ICICI Lombard’s risk management journey.

IRMA has been synonymous with the changing focus of ICICI Lombard in helping India Inc with risk management.  “It's been six years since we launched this platform (IRMA) dedicated to risk management, in association with CNBC TV 18. Over the years, it's become the benchmark for the industry to promote the cause of risk management among India Inc. We have been continuously scaling this platform and have had our privilege of several globally renowned speakers over the years,” Dasgupta said.

First Published: Mar 24, 2020 03:52:30 PM IST