Track and Field in T&T will always have a friend in Sagicor General Insurance (SGI) says Dyan Loutan-Ali, vice-president of local operations. She made the announcement at the company’s tenth anniversary celebration held at Hyatt Regency Trinidad on Dock Road in Port-of-Spain, yesterday.


Sagicor General was a title sponsor of the National Association of Athletics Administrations (NAAA) Senior Open Championships held at the Hasely Crawford National Stadium in Woodbrook last June. On that occasion Richard Thompson broke his own national record of 9.85 by three hundredths of a second–a 9.82 seconds run in the 100-metre re-match against fellow Olympic medallist Keston Bledman.


The spectacular performance earned him the honour as the ninth fastest athlete in the history of the sport as he went on to hold the world’s top spot for two weeks as declared by the IAAF. Thompson is now ranked second in the world. Justin Gatlin of the United States was able to better Thompson’s time by two hundredths in Lausanne Diamond League meet on July 3.


Michelle Lee Ahye was also praised having won her 100-metre at the Sagicor Senior Open Championships. As of yesterday, her standing remained unchanged as the world’s number one since that performance. These were among the top-performing athletes who have convinced the regional insurance giant to focus its corporate social responsibility on sport and, in this instance, track and field.


Loutan-Ali said her company continued to grow its market share and it would keep reinvesting in the sport, which continued to produce world champion medallists at every international championship. Loutan-Ali said T&T operations of SGI remained strong and consequently served as the largest revenue generator of all its branches in the network across the Caribbean.


“Compared to other companies that wrote a similar income the fact that SGI achieved so much with less than 100 in head count was in itself a great accomplishment,” Loutan-Ali said.


“Today, T&T counts for 58 per cent of the entire Sagicor General underwriting portfolio. The T&T branch has successfully contributed to the rapid growth of the company. Prior to the opening of the branch in 2004, SGI recorded a gross premium income of $145 million dollars.


“Today, the company writes 396 million. In addition to the premium growth, the branch, through its prudent financial management, has contributed significantly to the growth on SGI’s balance sheet which stood at $659 million at the end of 2013. It is no surprise that SGI has maintained an AM Best rating of A-Excellent since June 2002.”


Loutan-Ali added: “To improve the lives of the people in the communities in which we operate represents a section of our vision which we at Sagicor General are very passionate about.


“It is for this reason we have sponsored events such as the NAAA. This particular event has had our support since 2004 when we started operations in T&T. We believe that these games open many doors for our athletes and in particular our youth, through scholarships, endorsements and opportunities to represent our country at one of the highest level.”


To the benefit of future athletes and the national community as well, the Sagicor official said three years ago, the company took the decision to adopt projects in communities that would enhance the level of education to primary school children. So far, the insurer provided air conditioning to the Brasso and Caparo Primary Schools and refurbished and restocked the library at the Salazar Trace Primary School in Point Fortin.


“The success of these initiatives was made possible because of the contribution and dedication of personal time by both Sagicor General and Sagicor Life staff. In 2013, we partnered with Sagicor Life with the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Programme in an effort to promote science in secondary schools throughout the Caribbean countries in which the Sagicor Group has a presence. This was quite successful and we will be continuing this initiative,” Loutan-Ali said.