With ICICI Lombard General Insurance, Neobank Qbook offers climate risk insurance to Indian shop owners and merchants

Chqbook Kirana Shop

Chqbook, India’s first neobank for small business owners, has launched a specially designed “Shop Insurance Cover” for its Digital Current Account customers. This insurance solution has been designed and launched in association with ICICI Lombard one of India’s leading general insurance companies. Under this insurance, losses incurred by shop owners due to floods, earthquakes, lightening, storms, cyclones, fire and other climate risks will be covered, including any loss due to burglary of contents in the shop.

Chqbook offers a digital current account for small business owners like kiranas, chemists and others, who can open an account instantly on the Chqbook app in a language they are comfortable with. The current account, which is available in 8 languages, has received strong traction within months of its launch. Chqbook plans to on-board more than 500,000 shop owners and merchants in the next 12 months.

India is already facing devastating impacts from climate change and stands to lose 5.21% of its GDP by 2050 as per G20 climate risk atlas report. Small businesses in India account for 30% of the GDP and often lack access to financial services, including insurance. The lack of access and low awareness leaves them vulnerable to climatic risks and other man-made risks, forcing them to either take loans or use their savings to cover the losses- potentially pushing them into poverty.Looking at this massive under-penetration and the need to safeguard this community from unforeseen losses through inclement climatic activities, Chqbook will bear the first-year premium towards this Shop Insurance.

Mohit Goel, Co-founder – Chqbook said, “Our recent survey found that only 1 in 5 small business owners have insured their shops and contents, despite the potential risks. More than 50% of shop owners feel they are not at risk. This has led to financial struggles for many, with 80% forced to use their savings, sell their valuables or take out loans to recover losses. Our partnership with ICICI Lombard General Insurance aims to address this issue and make our community more resilient and financially secure. By bundling shop insurance solutions with our Digital Current Account, we are enabling small business owners to access financial services on their smartphones with no paperwork, empowering them to run and grow their business with the protection they need. As a responsible neobank and task force member of B20 (under G20), we remain committed to delivering financial inclusion for economic empowerment.

Speaking about the partnership Sandeep Goradia, Chief – Corporate Solutions of ICICI Lombard, said, “We are delighted to announce our collaboration with Chqbook in their vision of offering financial protection to India’s thriving, yet vulnerable population of shop owners and merchants. As a significant contributor to our economy, this highly adaptable customer segment can often find themselves with a lack of options when it comes to risk management. With our extensive range of customised solutions, we are confident that bundling of such a solution will contribute towards increased preparedness and responsiveness of small/micro business owners vis a vis unpredictability during their operations. This will further enable insurance penetration and adoption of micro insurance products in India.”

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