Generally speaking, the insurance market consists of two main segments: life insurance and non-life insurance. A life insurance contract means that a beneficiary will receive a payment in the event of the policyholder’s death or terminal illness, whereas non-life insurance covers the multitude of other areas of activity, including car insurance, property & casualty insurance and homeowner insurance.
Significant differences in the value of particular market segments can be observed. The gross written premiums of the European life-insurance companies in 2016 amounted to 695.5 billion euros, which signified a decline of 43.6 billion on the previous year. In the non-life premiums segment of the market, they amounted to 340 billion euros, which constituted less than half of the life premiums value. In terms of benefits paid out to policy holders, in the life segment they amounted to approximately 616.27 million euros. The United Kingdom was the leading recipient country, recording the value of life benefits equal to 171.71 million euros. In the non-life segment, the highest value of claims was paid out in Germany at 75.79 million euros.
Insurance companies that offered best-in-class customer experiences grew faster and profited more with their brand gaining positive recognition. Some of the most valuable European insurance brands in 2015 were domiciled in selected Western European countries, i.e. in Germany (Allianz) and in France (Axa). When looking at particular European countries, the happiest insurance customers can be found in Austria. In that country, nearly 65 percent of insurance firms' clients reported a positive experience in 2016. On the other hand, the highest levels of disappointment were reported in 2015 in Denmark (9.6 percent of customers) and in the Netherlands (9.4 percent). The majority of European customers reflected in a neutral fashion on their insurance experiences.