By helping operators improve productivity and safety, the Khusela insurance products makes their small businesses sustainable.
As a gateway financer, in line with its certification as a developmental credit provider, South Africa’s only independent financer of minibus taxis, SA Taxi, has created its own insurance products aimed at helping minibus taxi operators improve the safety of their taxis, protect their business operations, and earn extra revenue.
In addition, because the products, known as Khusela Taxi Insurance and Khusela Taxi Business Insurance, are available not just to SA Taxi customers but to all operators and are sold through the taxi industry’s top brokers, they help create jobs in the insurance sector.
“An operator’s minibus taxi is not just a vehicle, it’s the heart of a small business,” says Maroba Maduma, head of sales for SA Taxi Protect, SA Taxi’s insurance division. “So, operators are actually entrepreneurs who play a vital role in the second economy even with just a single vehicle. However, many go on to expand either into bigger fleets of taxis or other small businesses, creating jobs for others and gaining access to the mainstream economy for themselves.
“None of this is possible, however, if operators are not given some help in managing the costs of their initial small businesses and, once there is growth, in maintaining their profitability.
“For this reason, we developed our Khusela products to give operators extremely practical and affordable ways of extracting better value from their assets.”
Khusela Taxi Business Insurance provides instalment protection, enabling the operator to stay in business while his vehicle is out of service. Should a vehicle not be repaired within seven days of an accident or breakdown, the policy ensures that up to 100% of the operator’s next instalment is paid to his credit provider – which may not be SA Taxi. Should a taxi be damaged within the first six months of purchase to the extent that it unsafe to repair, it will be replaced and a new fleet tracking unit installed. A Taxi Business Legal Assist option provides owners with access to legal advice for their business.
While providing for normal insurance benefits, such as comprehensive cover for accident and windscreen damage, theft, and hijack, the products also encourage operators to take the kind of pre-emptive action that reduces the need for repairs and prevents accidents. Operators can get 10% cash back on their premiums, from the first month, if they ensure that they pass an approved safety check, install and maintain a tracking system, and participate in an sms theft or hijack alert system.
In addition, through the Khusela offering, operators can gain access to media companies that want to place adverts in or on taxis. By this means, they can earn extra revenue – usually more than enough to cover their insurance premiums.
Backed by South Africa’s leading specialised insurer, Guardrisk, the Khusela products are the only ones in the industry to offer cash back from month one.
Theo Mvalo of Taccsure says that his company is impressed with the support for the industry that the Khusela products demonstrate.
“Other products tend to focus on the vehicles themselves rather than the role they play in the operator’s business. For instance, conventional taxi insurance does not acknowledge that the operator’s ability to pay his monthly instalment on a vehicle is directly related to that vehicle working as planned throughout the month on its given route. By contrast, that’s where Khusela focuses.
“Also, features like the built-in sms alert system – which tells the operator when a vehicle is not on the road and therefore that the business’ revenue is under threat – prove to the taxi associations we talk to that the Khusela products will add tangible and significant value to their operations.”