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Establishing insurance markets in settler economies. a comparison of Australian and South Africa insurance markets, 1820-1910
journal contributionposted on 2015-01-02, 00:00 authored by Monica KeneleyMonica Keneley, G Verhoef
How did insurance markets in the settler economies of Australia and South Africa develop? This paper investigates the establishment of the local insurance industries in two settler economies in the wake of the absence of comparative studies in the emergence of insurance markets in the periphery. The paper compares conditions in these settler economies and notes the innovative role of local entrepreneurs. British insurance companies extended operations into the British colonies, but local interests emerged to challenge their dominance. Innovations in organisational form, product offerings and distribution channels afforded local entrepreneurs a competitive advantage in the life market. Collusion in the fire market restricted innovative practices and retained foreign control. This article explains the agency of local entrepreneurs in the emergence of insurance markets in two settler societies at the end of the nineteenth century. This historical development path has notable implications for the current development of insurance markets in Africa.