Product details

By continuing to use our site you consent to the use of cookies as described in our privacy policy unless you have disabled them.
You can change your cookie settings at any time but parts of our site will not function correctly without them.
Prize winner
Case
-
Reference no. IMD-7-2128
Authors: Amit Joshi; Ivy Buche
Published by: International Institute for Management Development (IMD)
Originally published in: 2019
Version: 30.06.2021
Revision date: 13-Dec-2021

Abstract

This case traces the journey of the AXA group, one of the top three insurance providers globally from 2016 to 2019 under the leadership of newly appointed CEO, Thomas Buberl. During this period, the insurance industry faced strong headwinds - persistent low interest rates, weak financial markets, evolving customer expectations, new types of risks associated with cyber, health and natural catastrophes, as well as widespread disruption from the new breed of insurtech players. Buberl's strategy rested on two pillars - focus to drive efficiency in the company's core business and transform to prepare it for the digital age by developing new capabilities and value propositions to allow it to shift from a payer-to-partner business model. Buberl's biggest move, contrary to market expectations, was a pivot in AXA's portfolio from life and savings to commercial property and casualty (P&C), achieved through the USD15.3 billion acquisition of US-based XL Group, making AXA the largest P&C player globally. Other moves included increasing its focus on the health insurance segment, accelerating growth in Asia, and launching a new business unit - AXA Next - to build an innovation ecosystem focused on developing services and business models beyond insurance. However, competition from both traditional insurers and niche players was intense as a wave of M&As swept across the industry. The rules of the game were changing fast. Could AXA maintain its leadership position? And if so, how?

Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 2016-2019.

Geographical setting

Region:
World/global

Featured company

AXA Group
Turnover:
EUR 102 billion
Industry:
Insurance

About

Abstract

This case traces the journey of the AXA group, one of the top three insurance providers globally from 2016 to 2019 under the leadership of newly appointed CEO, Thomas Buberl. During this period, the insurance industry faced strong headwinds - persistent low interest rates, weak financial markets, evolving customer expectations, new types of risks associated with cyber, health and natural catastrophes, as well as widespread disruption from the new breed of insurtech players. Buberl's strategy rested on two pillars - focus to drive efficiency in the company's core business and transform to prepare it for the digital age by developing new capabilities and value propositions to allow it to shift from a payer-to-partner business model. Buberl's biggest move, contrary to market expectations, was a pivot in AXA's portfolio from life and savings to commercial property and casualty (P&C), achieved through the USD15.3 billion acquisition of US-based XL Group, making AXA the largest P&C player globally. Other moves included increasing its focus on the health insurance segment, accelerating growth in Asia, and launching a new business unit - AXA Next - to build an innovation ecosystem focused on developing services and business models beyond insurance. However, competition from both traditional insurers and niche players was intense as a wave of M&As swept across the industry. The rules of the game were changing fast. Could AXA maintain its leadership position? And if so, how?

Settings

Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 2016-2019.

Geographical setting

Region:
World/global

Featured company

AXA Group
Turnover:
EUR 102 billion
Industry:
Insurance

Related


Awards, prizes & competitions