The SPB Group opens its first office in Asia through its travel insurance subsidiary AVI International

10/01/2019

Press release

Published by SPB

The SPB Group, European leader in affinity insurances and services, has opened its first business site in the Asian market. The group’s subsidiary AVI International, a broker specialised in travel health insurance and a long-standing partner of the Guide du Routard travel guide publisher, recently opened an office in Hong Kong, AVI Insurance HK Limited.

A strategic site in the Chinese market
Constituting a new step forward in AVI’s international development after Madrid and Miami, the new office in Hong Kong offers the possibility of creating a true bridge between Europe, Asia and the United States and thereby better serving Chinese customers, which already account for a substantial share of AVI’s business.

Boasting strong presence in the tourism sector, and notably in education, AVI International is seeking above all to strengthen its position in the international education market in China, one of the world's largest.

While the number of foreign students in China is increasing 10% every year, some 500,000 Chinese students are now completing one or several years of study abroad. Similarly, language-learning and tourism visits by Chinese travellers have been growing constantly for several years, including 2.5 million in France last year.

An initial step in a long-term strategy
This initial step is part of a long-term strategy.

Chinese customers account for a considerable share of customers; they stand out most of all through their needs and behaviour. These last differ from those of Westerners, notably due to numerous cultural differences in terms of the use of technology.

According to QuestMobile, a market research firm, mobile payments increased 180% in China in 2017, owing in particular to the rapid development of the WeChat and Alipay apps. Some 800 million Chinese people have linked their WeChat account to their bank account.

SPB Group’s Chairman of the Management Board, Jean-Marie Guian said: “China is a strategic market for the SPB Group. The opening of an office in Hong Kong by our subsidiary AVI International will enable us to learn about the culture, behaviour and expectations of Chinese customers so that we can bring them insurance products fully in line with their needs.”

About AVI International: Paris – Miami – Madrid – Hong Kong
AVI International is an international broker with nearly 40 years’ experience in travel health insurance. AVI has developed an international network comprising four offices worldwide and over 400 partners, including travel agencies, banks, airline companies, schools, travel guides and web portals.
AVI’s long-standing partnership with the Guide du Routard travel guide publisher has made it a reference for globetrotters with its Routard and Marco Polo travel insurance policies. AVI International is a subsidiary of the SPB Group, a broker-manager and the European leader in insurance policies for everyday objects, with 50 million policyholders managed in 17 countries. Find out more at www.avi-international.com

Press contacts
Pauline Reynaud - preynaud@spb.eu

Contacts presse
Paul Chazel - pchazel@spb.eu

Contacts presse
Virginie Girard - vgirard@avi-international.com