ECO MONDAY Sada Assurances: the winning transformation of the niche insurer

The historic headquarters of Sada, rue Scatisse (Photo Pierre Havez)

Every Monday in August, Objectif Gard invites you to discover the history of a flagship company in the department. Having become the headquarters of the French subsidiary of a large German mutual insurance company, the Sada Assurances group has undergone several changes since its creation in Nîmes, between the wars. An article that you may have read in issue 42 of Objectif Gard le magazine.

Founded in 1932, the Sada (Autonomous Defense and Assistance Company) was thus, at the start, the association of road users in the Gard. But, in 1967, the Automobile Club du Gard became an insurance company by obtaining approval for drivers’ liability, then the following year, that of damage insurance. The car and home insurer from Nîmes was much later taken over by a first insurer across the Rhine, before becoming 100% owned by another German mutual, DEVK, in 1999.

But Sada Assurances will never have left Nîmes and its building on rue Scatisse, a stone’s throw from the Gard prefecture, built by one of its first managers, Mr. Lafargue. In his office on the 4th floor, with a panoramic view of the Magne tower, the rooftops of the city center and the station, André Hess, chairman of the executive board of Sada since 2009, welcomes the company’s attachment to the city Nimes. Rather than migrating to the Parc George-Besse business district, the manager and his collaborators have preferred to patiently renovate their historic head office, investing around €2.5 million to renovate one floor per year for the past four years.

Top 30 companies in the Gard

“We are one of the only French insurance companies not to have its head office in the Paris regionpoints out the leader of Strasbourg origin. This location and our human-sized structure make us an insurance SME, with a capacity for rapid decision-making, agility and an ability to offer tailor-made offers, which others do not have. »

A formula that has gradually made Sada Assurances one of the top 30 companies in the Gard. From the 2000s, the insurer gradually abandoned its historical motor insurance activity to focus on professional real estate. At the same time, its current manager has chosen to close its various agencies in France to work exclusively through its network of 560 brokers in France and in the Drom-Com (overseas departments and regions and overseas communities). sea).

Niche insurer

“Since we definitively stopped our automobile branch, which had become too competitive, in 2019, office property and condominium insurance represents 70% of our turnover, ahead of insurance for unpaid rent (25%) and comprehensive home insurance », summarizes André Hess. Having become the French leader in the unpaid rent market, the “niche” insurer has at the same time seen its turnover grow in recent years, rising from €49.4 million in 2009 to €180 million in 2021.

The Sada (Autonomous Defense and Assistance Company) was founded in 1932 (Photo Pierre Havez)

But the company, which already has 120 employees in Nîmes – for a total of 145 in France – continues to grow, recruiting 15 new positions for this year. “Our added value lies in our ability to offer innovative and personalized products, such as our new multi-risk offer for real estate professionals, or our surety insurance for tenants”, continues the leader. Aware that its strengths lie in people, the insurance specialist for real estate professionals pampers its employees, thanks to a state-of-the-art social policy.

Human capital

“For example, we have been followers of teleworking since 2015. Before the confinement, around fifty of our employees already practiced it regularly. During the crisis, this became the case for 100% of them, and now, while everyone can choose the number of teleworking days they want, the average is three days a week in the company., says André Hess. A win-win choice for the leader. “It’s less stress, more calm and a lot of time saved for our employees, but also productivity gains for the company”he assures.

Thanks to its CSR (corporate social responsibility) policy, Sada Assurances also has a gender parity index of 86% and trains all of its managers in psychosocial risks, for example. Every two years, the company even has an external company carry out an internal satisfaction audit of its employees with regard to their working conditions or the future of the company. A model of successful co-construction.

Pierre Havez

The Sada in a few figures : Sada Assurances is a spin-off from the Autonomous Society for Defense and Assistance association, founded in 1932. The company currently has 145 employees, including 120 in Nîmes, and is recruiting another 15 new positions in 2022. Through a network of 560 brokers in France and in the Drom-Com (Overseas departments and regions and overseas communities), Sada Assurances achieves €180 million in turnover in 2021 and a net result of €9.6 million € up 12% compared to 2020. The Nîmes insurer is the French leader in unpaid rent insurance and represents nearly 9% of the market share in the condominium insurance segment. The mandate of its chairman of the management board, André Hess, aged 64, runs until 2024.

Currently find issue 46 of Objectif Gard Le Magazine, on newsstands until August 4. Check out the summary below:

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