IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company Gets GIFT City IFSC Registration

Mumbai-based life insurance company, IndiaFirst Life, has achieved a noteworthy milestone by becoming the first life insurance company to obtain registration within the GIFT City International Financial Services Centre (IFSC). This registration was granted following approvals from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) in August 2023 and subsequent registration from the International Financial Services Centre Authority (IFSCA) in September 2023. This significant step positions IndiaFirst Life to extend its services beyond the boundaries of India.

GIFT City IFSC: A Financial Services Hub

Gujarat International Finance Tec (GIFT) City serves as the sole entity in India operating as an International Financial Services Centre (IFSC), functioning much like a specialized economic zone designed for financial services. This strategic location presents new opportunities for IndiaFirst Life in the global financial landscape.

A Global Perspective for IndiaFirst Life

Rushabh Gandhi, Deputy CEO of IndiaFirst Life Insurance, expressed the company’s global aspirations, stating, “We aim to expand our market presence and leverage customer outreach opportunities on a global scale. IndiaFirst Life’s entry into the advanced and modern financial ecosystem of GIFT City IFSC will enable us to protect lives and deliver value to our international customers, especially NRIs (non-resident Indians) banking with our partner banks – Bank of Baroda and Union Bank of India.”

Key Stakeholders and Unique Offerings

IndiaFirst Life Insurance is supported by prominent stakeholders, including Bank of Baroda, Union Bank of India, and Warburg Pincus-owned Carmel Point Investments, with respective stakes of 65%, 9%, and 26% in the company. The company stands out in the insurance industry by providing straightforward, easily comprehensible products that are competitively priced and efficiently serviced.

Expansion and IPO Plans

Beyond its international expansion, IndiaFirst Life is taking steps toward offering its equity shares to the public. The company submitted its Draft Red Herring Prospectus to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on October 21, 2022, signaling its intent to go public and potentially broaden its investor base.

About GIFT City

Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City) is a financial hub in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. It is India’s first operational greenfield smart city and international financial services center, which the Government of Gujarat promoted as a greenfield project.

  • It is divided into three zones: the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC), the Domestic Tariff Area (DTA), and the Special Economic Zone (SEZ).
  • It is home to a number of financial institutions, including banks, insurance companies, and asset management firms. It is also home to a number of technology companies, including IT firms and software development companies.
  • It is well-connected to the rest of India by road, rail, and air. It is located just 30 kilometers (19 mi) from Ahmedabad, which is a major transportation hub.
  • It is a rapidly growing financial hub. It is expected to become a major center for financial services in India and the world.

GIFT City Ltd is a company incorporated under the Companies Act, 1956. It is the special purpose vehicle (SPV) responsible for the development and management of Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City). The company is owned by the Government of Gujarat and the Gujarat Urban Development Corporation (GUDC).

Importance of Gift City

  • Tax benefits: GIFT City offers a number of tax benefits to financial institutions and businesses. These benefits include a 10-year tax holiday, a 5% corporate tax rate, and no capital gains tax.
  • World-class infrastructure: GIFT City has world-class infrastructure, including a modern airport, a high-speed rail link, and a fiber-optic network.
  • Strategic location: GIFT City is located in Gujarat, which is a major financial and business hub in India. It is also located close to the Arabian Sea, which gives it access to global markets.
  • Supportive government policies: The Indian government is supportive of GIFT City and has provided a number of policies to promote the development of the project. These policies include the setting up of a special regulatory authority for GIFT City and the provision of financial assistance to businesses that are set up in the city.

GIFT City is a promising project with the potential to become a major financial hub in India and the world. It is well-located, has world-class infrastructure, and offers a number of tax benefits to financial institutions and businesses. The Indian government is supportive of the project, and it is likely to continue to grow in the coming years.


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