Health and wellness

Start-up CXA, Fosun group to bring unique insurance and wellness platform to China

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 08 February, 2017, 9:03am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 08 February, 2017, 3:07pm

Health technology start-up CXA Group plans to collaborate with Chinese conglomerate Fosun International to launch a new insurance platform on the mainland that automates employee health care programmes and creates a marketplace for so-called wellness providers.

Rosaline Chow Koo, the founder and chief executive of Singapore-based CXA, said the alliance will see its operations expand into Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen this year.

The company will directly work with Shanghai Zhongheng Insurance Brokers, a part of the Fosun group.

The development follows CXA’s announcement on Wednesday of a successful Series B investment round worth US$25 million, led by B Capital Group and Singapore's EDBI. Other high-profile investors include Philips Healthcare and RGAx, a subsidiary of the Reinsurance Group of America.

“What we are is an insurance broker with a technology platform,” Koo said.

CXA says it uses health screening and lifestyle risks information, sensors and claims data to predict future premiums. It also designs so-called wellness and disease management programmes. Employees are given a “fixed benefits” wallet to choose the most relevant mix of insurance and wellness services from a wide range of providers, such as gyms and yoga classes, to suit their personal needs.

That enables CXA to pre-negotiate reduced future premiums from insurers for companies that improve their employees’ health.

“Employers can see the direct link between wellness initiatives and premiums, and have the return on investment to justify their health management programmes,” Koo said. “CXA can help employers across Asia regain control of rising health care costs, which has seen double-digit annual increases due to chronic disease hitting Asia 10 years before the West.”

She said CXA’s latest funding round will drive its expansion into China and eight other countries, and further disrupt the estimated US$100 billion employee benefits industry in Asia.

Cheng Shaosen, chief executive of Shanghai Zhongheng Insurance Brokers, said on Tuesday that CXA’s “focus on engaging employees with personalised choice and rewards for getting healthier will resonate with the largest companies in China”.

CXA, founded by Koo in 2013, currently has about 500 corporate clients in Singapore and Hong Kong.

Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, who is also a co-founder and partner at B Capital Group, now sits on the board of CXA following the start-up’s latest funding round.

“Its unique business model cuts across three out of four of our focus industries, including health and wellness, financial services and consumer services,” Saverin said in a statement. “The CXA platform offers an innovative solution that facilitates deeper and more personalised benefits experiences in the workplace.”

In 2015, CXA raised US$8 million in its Series A venture funding round from prominent investors, including NSI Ventures, BioVeda and F&H Fund Management. This funding enabled CXA to set up its Hong Kong operation.

The company acquired the Pan Group, Singapore’s largest home-grown employee benefits brokerage, in 2014, to bolster its expertise in health care analytics and the insurance brokerage business.