On 1 October 2009, Česká pojišťovna and Komerční banka will launch their co-operation in mutual distribution of their products. At Komerční banka's branches, clients now have an opportunity to take out property & casualty policies from Česká pojišťovna. On the other hand, Česká pojišťovna will make Komerční banka's mortgage loans available in its distribution network. This is the largest strategic alliance formed in the Czech financial sector this year.

The co-operation between number one on the insurance market and number one in the segment of banking services for businesses will also offer a number of advantages to the two companies' retail clients. In addition to the much better availability of products thanks to the expansion of the distribution network, the co-operation also includes increasing the qualification of the two financial institutions' employees and co-operation in the development of new products.

At its almost 400 points of sale, Komerční banka will offer its clients, for example, property & casualty policies, MTPL, comprehensive auto insurance, and third-party liability insurance policies, and also policies covering financial and agricultural risks provided by Česká pojišťovna. On the other hand, Česká pojišťovna will offer its clients Komerční banka's mortgage loans at more than 380 of its points of sale and through its network of several hundred specially trained insurance brokers.

“Our products, Česká pojišťovna's products, and the distribution methods ideally complement each other and offer Komerční banka's clients an opportunity to take out various combinations of banking and insurance products at one point and under advantageous conditions,” Vladimír Jeřábek, member of the Board of Directors and Senior Executive Director at Komerční banka, comments on the agreement. “Thanks to our co-operation and an effective product distribution model, for some types of insurance Komerční banka's clients will obtain policies that are up to tens of per cent more advantageous,” adds Štefan Tillinger, on the Board of Directors and Executive Board Member for Retail at Česká pojišťovna.

Together with the new co-operation agreement, Komerční banka and Česká pojišťovna have presented a new joint product: insurance cover for photovoltaic plants. Solar energy is a sector that offers an attractive growth potential, but is significantly underinsured. The reasons include both the inadequate offering of insurance products on the market and the fact that small photovoltaic operators do not realise that their assets face a number of risks and should be covered.

“Česká pojišťovna and Komerční banka have developed a product that, in comparison with competitors, provides sufficiently high insurance limits to cover the whole value of solar panels or large photovoltaic power plants. Operators of solar plants at last have an opportunity to protect their assets sufficiently against a broad range of the risks associated with plant construction and operation,” says Štefan Tillinger of the Česká pojišťovna Board of Directors.

Not only operators of large photovoltaic power plants but also ordinary consumers who decide to install solar panels on their property can use the new policy. The policy covers the time of plant construction and also its operation, offering protection against damage caused by natural forces and events, operational damage, theft, vandalism, damage to adjacent property, damage caused by handling on site, and damage to material stored on site.

For ordinary consumers who operate solar panels on their own houses, KB and ČP have prepared a variant of all-risk insurance which covers the above risks and also electronic risks (for example, damage caused by a power surge or by induction).

The number of people who want to install solar panels on their houses has increased approximately five times in the last five years. At present, most of those who are building their new house are considering installing these panels on their house, mainly thanks to subsidies and broad-ranging media support.

“Insurance of photovoltaic capacities will further enhance Komerční banka's important position in the financing of the development of renewable energy sources in the Czech Republic. The fact that those who want to build a photovoltaic plant need only one point to obtain both the financing and the cover for their investment will help to greatly simplify the administration of the financing of construction and to increase the certainty of a return on the investment,” says Vladimír Jeřábek, member of the Board of Directors and Senior Executive Director at Komerční banka.

The Komerční banka/Česká pojišťovna co-operation agreement has been in effect since 21 September 2009. Following a ten-day period of pilot operation, on 1 October 2009 the two companies go live in the distribution of each other's products.

Česká pojišťovna is the largest general insurance company in the Czech Republic. It has more than 9.5 million policies under management and insures more than one half of Czech households. ČP operates more than 3,000 points of sale. This year, at a time when the economic crisis is peaking, Standard & Poor's increased its rating from A to A+ with a stable outlook. ČP has therefore achieved the highest possible rating that can be awarded in this country, because the Czech Republic has received the same rating.

Česká pojišťovna is part of Generali PPF Holding B.V., with a presence in 14 CEE countries. Through its subsidiaries it manages assets of more than 12 billion euro and provides services to over 10 million clients in the region.

Komerční banka is one of the best run universal banks in Central Europe. It provides comprehensive services to clients in the areas of retail, corporate, and investment banking. The Komerční banka Group's 8,890 employees serve 1,636,000 clients, who can use an extensive network of 397 points of sale throughout the country. Komerční banka currently operates 680 ATMs and more than 966,000 of its clients use one of direct banking channels.

Komerční banka is part of the Société Générale Group, one of the largest banking groups in the euro zone (in terms of market capitalisation), whose 163,000 employees serve more than 30 million individual clients worldwide.