|By Marketwired .||
|August 7, 2013 12:21 PM EDT||
MILL VALLEY, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 08/07/13 -- Strategic Health Management (SHM), a northern California-based insurance consultancy, has been awarded U.S. patent number 8,150,715 for its innovative pricing mechanism bearing the trademark 'FIPO®' (Flexible Insurance Premium Option). FIPO® is a flexible pricing tool that applies to all combination/linked life and annuity products that include Long-Term Care benefits. It offers significant advantages when compared to level-premium Combos, while enabling insurers to develop their own proprietary products.
"Despite the extraordinary tax incentives provided by the 2006 Pension Protection Act for the purchase of Combo products -- designed to address our nation's growing need for LTCI -- the insurance industry has been struggling to realize the potential of Combo products," said SHM's CEO Hersh Markusfeld.
FIPO® pricing helps address key issues by offering a high degree of flexibility to design market-driven Combo Life and Annuity products. An insurer can set 'internal dials' such as the shape and steepness of the LTC charge curve, market weight assigned to annuity/life values vs. LTC benefits, and internal profit targets. FIPO® products can help insurers defend their in-force business and capture new markets in their most desirable consumer segments.
Consumers will also benefit from FIPO® pricing, as they can receive far greater LTC benefits -- at least twice those of level-premium combination products -- at the same going-in price. FIPO® combination products will appeal to consumers who are rightfully concerned about depleting their retirement assets, and who are looking for products that deliver better protection.
"I believe FIPO® will enable innovative insurers to meet real consumer needs -- including new recurring-premium Combo products to reach the broad middle market -- while providing competitive advantage for their distribution partners," Markusfeld concluded.
About Strategic Health Management:
Founded in 1986, SHM is a product development firm that works with insurers and distributors to bring innovative, consumer-friendly products to market. SHM has developed proprietary, patented pricing methodologies that make Combo products more attractive and affordable for consumers, and that give clients a competitive edge. SHM is partnering with Ruark Insurance Advisors to help clients achieve sustainable growth and first-mover advantage in these huge, emerging markets.