More and more pet owners are turning to pet insurance to help cover the rising costs of pet health care. Still, pet insurance penetration levels remain low in North America, particularly compared to European countries such as the U.K. and Sweden, where a quarter to a half of pets are covered.
Pet owners are increasingly being bombarded with pet insurance marketing, whether from the new companies that have entered the scene (three in the last two years), the new TV ads that several players have recently launched, or the myriad print ads, banner ads or social media activity that has kept the industry abuzz. Pet insurance providers are crafting marketing messages that play on pet owners' love of their furry family members, the cute things they do and how they should be protected when unexpected things happen.
Packaged Facts expects the North American market for pet insurance to continue to chart strong annual gains over the next five years, with the high level of competitive activity generating increased awareness and demand among pet owners. Revenues (measured as gross written premiums) remained in the double digits in 2013, while showing robust growth over the previous five years, recession notwithstanding.
Industry pioneer Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI) continues to lead the market. However, both the U.S. and the Canadian pet insurance markets have experienced significant market share shifts during the past five years as newer entrants have gained traction and made huge inroads into the business. The industry has been good to new entrants including Trupanion, PetPlan and PetFirst, while two smaller players—PurinaCare and PetSafe—have left the scene (with PurinaCare’s policies acquired by Pethealth). The industry has also seen some changes in ownership and financial backing, strengthening the prospects of companies including Embrace, Hartville, Trupanion and Western Financial.[Source: "Pet Insurance in North America." Packaged Facts. 30 Sept. 2013. Web. 2 Dec. 2013.]