The origins of Euresa
At the end of the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s, the European cooperative and mutual insurance companies were discussing how they could position themselves within the developing European single market, which was still very compartmentalized. They were fixed with:
- Increased competition, and in particular growing market concentration through mergers, acquisitions and absorptions leading to the emergence of large European and even world-wide groupings.
- Changes in the behaviour of consumers, who were increasingly becoming « European citizens/consumers », travelling freely within the European area or even moving abroad for professional reasons or for retirement.
At the same time, these companies wanted to make use of their membership in the Social Economy and to maintain their special nature as mutual and cooperative companies, firstly for reasons of principle but also as part of a strategy of differentiation.
Facing these same issues, and sharing the same economic and social background, the companies Folksam, Macif, P&V and Unipol established joint tools in 1990 (one of which was a European Economic Interest Group), in order to:
- Gradually make their companies part of a European network;
- Strengthen their positions on their respective markets through innovative solutions (products and services, systems for marketing and distribution and management) thereby meeting the increasing « Europeanization » of consumer needs;
All this would be done without diluting their respective identities.
This is how Euresa was born. It is an operational and flexible tool for cooperation and collaboration among the European insurance companies belonging to the Social Economy.