WEALINS – 30 years being a partner of Excellence in the market

WEALINS celebrates, this year, three decades of history – the world has evolved, the market has advanced and, with them, this reference brand in the insurance sector has prospered. This chronology of success is now described by Letícia Soares, Country Manager Portugal who, in the following lines, addresses the commitment that remains today in working side by side with partners and customers, since they are the strong drivers of the motivation that gives wings to the promising results of the present and, mainly, of the future of this company.

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WEALINS has become, over 30 years, a trusted partner and one of the main players in the life insurance sector operating under the Luxembourg regime of Freedom to Provide Services. How can you describe to us not only the role of brand commitment and experience, but also the relationship it has built with the customer over the last three decades?
Over these 30 years, the WEALINS team has been developing its unique approach to the market. At our core, we favor a human-centric approach.
Internally, we have more than 120 multidisciplinary and multilingual specialists who, due to their proximity to each of our markets, understand the expectations of our partners and their clients and are driven by a permanent desire to innovate to better understand and satisfy our clients’ needs. Thus, we can be considered as true entrepreneurs. Our team’s experience, as well as in-depth knowledge and understanding of the regulatory and tax frameworks of each market, allow us to offer a quality service.
WEALINS has developed a unique partnership approach, collaborating with reference professionals in the areas of asset management and wealth structuring.
Our vision of collaboration with our partners allows us to share know-how and reciprocal support, to develop and offer the best possible solution, while guaranteeing respect for the exclusive and privileged nature of the relationship between the client and the partner in question.
Our objective in the market is defined in the long-term: commitment to excellence – providing an excellent service to our partners, we strengthen their relationship with their clients.
The notion of “client-centricity” and the satisfaction of our partners and their clients are at the heart of our business. We are driven by excellence. All our employees have specific areas of expertise, and the synergies between our teams allow us to design  solutions that respond to market demands.
It has been all these characteristics that over these 30 years have made us a trusted partner.

The dedicated WEALINS team held a roadshow in nine European cities – including Lisbon – to thank them for their trust in the market. How important was (and is) this close contact with the cities that, with the company, have written a success story?
These events are extremely important. After all, we are only celebrating 30 years thanks to the trust and long-term business relationships we have built with our partners. They are the ones who motivate us to improve every day, to overcome ourselves. For this reason, this type of event not only demonstrates how committed we are to the market, but is also a way of thanking our partners for their trust over the last three decades.

The truth is that WEALINS has effectively walked and grown side by side with different markets, namely Portuguese. As Country Manager Portugal, how do you analyse the country in relation to the insurance sector?
The insurance sector, in its various aspects of life and non-life, continues to play a very important role in society, not only in protecting our assets, but also our health and savings. I believe that the insurance sector in Portugal has been adapting to all these changes and challenges resulting from climate change, the pandemic, the war, among others

The insurance industry is struggling to grow and maintain profitability in more mature and volatile markets in terms of economic conditions. Do you think that Portugal is a mature market in this type of solutions? How has WEALINS been driving its growth?
Portugal is undoubtedly a mature market for this type of solution. Our partners recognize the advantages for their clients and, given the legislative framework and the latest economic crises that the country has been going through; the unique protection framework that this type of product entails is a differentiating factor in the Portuguese market. Despite the notorious maturation, I believe that Portugal continues to be a growing market, not only because of the greater demand for this range of solutions across the board, but also because of the growing number of foreigners who are increasingly choosing Portugal to reside.
Considering that we have many international partners who contact us out every time a client moves to Portugal, including Nordic, Brazilian and French, WEALINS ends up boosting the Portuguese market, presenting the best solutions, always in accordance with the legal framework of the country.

It is not only the demand for the range of solutions that WEALINS offers that is evolving over time, the demand for foreigners who intend to reside in the country is also growing. Why do you think we have been witnessing this growth of foreigners in Portugal?
There are several reasons that we can find for this growing demand for Portugal. In fact, it could be said that we are “in fashion”.
From the fact that Lisbon and Porto are cosmopolitan cities, which are in no way behind any other European city, safety, the quality of our cuisine, as well as the fact that we are one of the sunniest destinations in Europe have undoubtedly helped a lot. The tax incentives created, such as the non-habitual resident’s regime, have also encouraged this election. And we cannot forget that we are considered one of the safest countries in the world.
At this moment, we even begin to see a great demand for Americans in our country.

In this process, WEALINS ends up playing a very important role: contributing, through life insurance, to the support that foreigners need in their move. In this context, to what extent is life insurance a useful tool?
Moving to a new country includes adapting to many changes in everyday life. Some of the most important are often the private economy and ensuring that estate planning is adapted to the new country. Wealth insurance is in most countries, including Portugal, a very useful tool that facilitates it.

As insurers adapt to market maturity and economic volatility, their ability to integrate technology and innovation into their business model over the long term may be key to success. In this sense, how has digitalization played an important role in the insurance industry in recent years?
Digitisation has played a key role in recent years and will continue to transform the way we interact and collaborate with the various stakeholders within  the insurance and wealth management sector. With the evolution of the asset management insurance sector, digitalization has simplified processes for the client, without ever neglecting security in the various steps.
Just think about these last 2 years in which teleworking was imperative and digitalisation came to help the business continue to flow.

Innovating day after day to develop solutions, unique and personalized services to provide a unique customer experience is a reality at WEALINS. So, given the technological advances required today, what has changed and/or improved within the company and in its practices?
It is true that innovation is currently a major issue particularly within the wealth insurance sector. Of course, innovation is a constantly evolving process, and we must make sure that we monitor and are attentive to market trends. We also listen to and exchange with our partners to better understand not only the current but also the future needs of our clients. We can react quickly to provide them with the best solution and the service they need and are committed to building a long-term relationship with them. To do so, we have created internally a culture of innovation focusing on a client-centric approach. Each employee is involved in the various innovation projects and thus becomes a stakeholder in our digital transformation. Our employees are then the best ambassadors of our new digital services to our partners and their clients.

Do you believe that the future of the sector in which WEALINS operates will depend on these three key words: digitization, innovation and sustainability? From your perspective, having these concepts aligned, what opportunities will emerge, not only for companies, but also for customers?
In the near future at least, studies show that (U)HNWI clients are both interested in innovation such as simplification of the underwriting process or the possibility to access certain data online anywhere and anytime. Clients actually need more flexibility that digitalisation can provide. At the same time, we see that the human-to-human approach and the expertise that we can provide, especially in wealth insurance, will continue to play a key role. We are also currently observing a growing interest in socially responsible investment, which allows to benefit from long-term financial performance and to create a positive impact on our society. At WEALINS, we are listening to these expectations and are ready to provide an answer to this new demand related to sustainable finance. In November, we will launch our first ESG insurance contract (dedicated to the Belgian market).

Faced with the reality that is already assumed today, what steps still need to be taken by WEALINS to be one step ahead of these market trends?
We develop a long-term vision and direction. We are committed to working hand in hand with our partners and clients to meettheir current and future wealth management expectations and build with them the wealth  insurance of tomorrow.
We know that our partners and their clients increasingly want access to a range of products and services that combine a digital and hyper-personalised approach. WEALINS must take these expectations into account when developing its future product and service offerings so that we can always be one step ahead of these market trends.

Looking to the future, what new developments can we expect from the company, namely in the Portuguese market?
Continue to innovate, develop new solutions, find the right balance between digitalisation and human relations to meet the needs and expectations of partners and their clients, as I believe that trust and physical presence are still essential in building long-term relationships and in this type of business, always maintaining a service of excellence.