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Prudential to hire 10,000 workers in India

Last updated on: April 30, 2007 17:58 IST

Prudential, the leading international financial services company, would hire at least 10,000 new staff in India this year for its joint venture insurance operation.

Shikha Sharma, chief executive of ICICI Prudential Life, said she expected to have a workforce of 27,000 by next March, compared to 16,300 last year and 7,700 two years ago.

ICICI Presidential Life, a joint venture between Prudential and ICICI, India's second-largest private bank, was set up six years ago. The former holds a stake of 26 per cent in ICICI Prudential life.

Sharma, who has pioneered insurance products for diabetes argued that India's huge untapped market means that ICICI Prudential Life can maintain a dizzying compound annual growth rate of more than 100 per cent for the next four to five years.

She said that the company targets India's growing ranks of affluent people and eyes the health-care sector.

"We expect well in excess of 100 million households to have disposable income by 2010," Sharma was quoted in The Times daily on Monday. The existing market is about 30 million.

At present the company has 4.5 million policyholders, whereas the Prudential's customers in UK number about 7 million.

Sharma said the ripest growth market is in healthcare insurance, a predominantly private sector market in which government tariff controls were lifted only last month. Car insurance also offers an opportunity, she added, referring to the state of India's accident-riddled road network.

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