Over a four-day period last week, 25 InsurTech startups made their pitches at two separate events in London’s insurance heartland. From new distribution models to engage with customers and smarter ways to underwrite risk. This week I summarize the ingenuity, creativity and innovation that is fuelling London as the global capital for InsurTech.
Common themes resonated amongst the 25 pitches. Themes that I have seen week after week as I interview InsurTech start-ups and scale-ups for Daily Fintech.
#1 – It’s all about the customer!
And so it should be! If insurance is to become a bought, not sold purchase of value then it starts with the customer. And this is not just about selling to a disinterested millennial generation; this is a theme that spans demographics and all classes of insurance.
Making policies simple to understand. Making them relevant to an individual’s needs. Personalizing the cover to take account of unique customer circumstances. Pricing them to be competitive.
#2 – The emergence of “Engagement Insurance”
When insurers connect with customers throughout the life of the policy, not just at renewal or claim. We’re seeing insurance becoming a lifestyle product through digital engagement.
And the emergence of on/off insurance.
And putting claimant’s first. After all, the value of insurance is realized through the claims process and yet satisfaction rates are woefully low. New tech and new business models that engage with claimants so that they feel they are getting value are emerging.
#3 – Show me the data!
Insurers need data. And continuously too! Instead of a single point in time assessment of a risk based on static data points, InsurTech is giving insurers real time, meaningful data specific to an individual risk.
Wearables, Connected Homes, Connected Cars, Internet of Things, Smartphone apps. All providing new sources of data to complement, and maybe one day, replace traditional underwriting data.
The first event was the InsurTech Meetup @ the Aviva Garage
If you take anything away from a visit to the Garage in Hoxton Square, it is a clear sense of Aviva’s commitment to innovation. And tonight, Aviva played host to an InsurTech meet up of around 200 people with pizza and beer.
Host Paul Heybourne kicked off proceedings by explaining the pitches would be given PechaKucha style (the Japanese chitchat format of presenting 20 slides, 20 seconds each). And it never fails to amaze me how startups adapt to the pressures of condensing their entire story/business plan/goals/aspirations and deep understanding of their markets in really short timeframes.
The startups pitched in the following order…
Worry + Peace – CEO James York
At a time when the broker model is under threat it is great to see a determined, passionate and customer centric approach. And James “gets it”!
Kasko – Co-Founder Nikolas.
Previously covered here on Daily Fintech, Kasko is a digital platform launching in Germany that connects insurance carriers at the point of sale and provides insurance cover as a secondary purchase.
HeyBrolly – Co-Founder Phoebe Hughes
Phoebe explained they will start by providing a single place to hold, store, and organise multiple insurance policies. And then map the cover you have against your needs and identify the gaps and any duplication.
Everledger – CEO and Founder Leanne Kemp
Leanne is a superstar and I must declare Everledger as a real favorite of mine. Using the blockchain, Leanne is building an ethical trading platform based on trust and security. (see Daily Fintech report on Everledger here).
Cuvva – CEO and Founder Freddy Mcnamara
Launched 6 weeks ago, Cuvva is a digital insurance platform for short-term motor cover. The on boarding process is simple and quick. Within minutes you can buy as little as one hour of cover.
Trov – European MD, Mitch Doust
Silicon Valley based Trov are about to redefine on/off protection insurance with their lifestyle app. Trov builds an inventory of personal possessions. With a swipe of finger, insurance is turned on and off as needed and billed to the second! (See feature from 2 weeks ago here).
Digital Risks – Founder, Ben Rose
Providing commercial insurance cover for digital and media businesses, Ben is on the money here with his approach. Whether that’s for traditional perils like fire, theft and flood, or newer risks such as cyber, making insurance simple and easy to buy is what Digital Risks do.
Next – Startupbootcamp Insurance, Selection Days
Whilst the accolade of the world’s first insurance accelerator can be claimed by the Des Moines based Global Insurance Accelerator, here in London, Startupbootcamp can rightly claim they are the first insurance accelerator for the world!
Since launching in the summer, SBC have kick started their first insurance program with some impressive stats;
- 1300+ discussions
- 250+ applications from InsurTech startups
- 42 businesses reviewed
- 18 startups selected for the Selection Days
- 8 countries represented from across Europe, Asia, ME, and Africa
- A final 10 startups selected for the program that starts in January
IMHO, there are several reasons why Startupbootcamp runs a very successful accelerator program: they have fantastic partner participation from the Insurance industry; they are tough in their selection process and even tougher in the bootcamp; and they have a great team led by Nektarios, who have created a business environment that is focused on success without losing a sense of fun.
And the numbers speak for themselves, with 7 out of 10 startups getting funded and launching in the real world!
All 18 are worthy finalists and here they are (alphabetically);
Israeli based SME commercial insurance broker based on a digital platform. Value proposition is simple – make it easier and cheaper for commercial businesses to buy insurance.
BimaAfya from Tanzinania build and manage the cheapest premium rated Health Insurance covers with the highest policy benefits covering all hospital expenses for the low income and mass market populations in sub Saharan Africa.
A price comparison site in the removals trade (not insurance). In the process of moving, a full itinerary is created. Buzzmove use this asset list for insurers to provide evidence of existence and value for household items.
Insurance for millennials. GenY don’t care about insurance, they just want to be covered easy, simple and digital. They want convenience. From building a digital profile, CoverDo use machine learning to assess insurance needs and provide suitable cover.
CoVi Analytics (selected)
The UK insurance industry has spent of £3bn on SolvencyII. Apart from keeping the regulator happy, they haven’t got much value from this spend. Covi offer a platform that take regulatory reports and enables insurers to use the data to derive value in a way they couldn’t do before.
Data/XL are taking a different approach to calculating price sensitivity in the market. Today, insurance premiums are determined bottom up by a process of assessing total loss within a class of business. By taking a sweep of the market on a like for like basis, Data/XL produce market pricing guides so that insurers can take a top down approach to setting rates.
Domotz Data (selected)
Domotoz is an Internet of Things solution for the connected home. The digital platform offers proactive management for all electronic devices, not just the heating control system. Domotz offers a platform for home insurers to rate risk and manage claims.
A “telematics” insurance solution for the growing use of drones, both privately and commercially. Drox have developed a black box solution that attaches to any drone and enables insurance protection linked to the use of the drone.
FitSense is a data aggregation platform for wearables in the health and well being space. Unlike others is this space, FitSense are not a distribution play. They are providing insurers and consumers with new sources of data to better underwrite risk and make healthy lifestyle choices. (see Daily Fintech research here)
Germany is proving to be a source of some great new distribution platforms, massUp being one of them. This is a platform to provide insurance as an add-on to the primary purchase. Using API’s, massUp connects insurers to retailers and markets, making it easy and convenient to buy protection insurance for a new purchase
Claims adjusting is a largely manual process that takes time and effort. German based, MotionsCloud is a cloud-based platform designed by adjusters, for adjusters to digitally capture and assess a claim better, faster, cheaper.
There are 5 million dormant pension accounts in the UK today. Which is an unintended consequence of regulations that stopped commission payments on life products. Myfuturenow will provide a self-advised consolidation solution to this massively under-served segment of the population.
Whether traveling to Lagos or Stockholm, the cost of travel insurance will be the same, based on you, not your location. This platform uses an online questionnaire to assess your specific travel risks and enable an underwriter to price the cover accurately. The key benefit to insurers is that they are able to better identify the higher risks and price these accordingly.
In the UK last year, over half a million cars were written off by insurers. The problem is that (a) insurers are over paying on the value of cars and (b) policyholders are dissatisfied even if they get more for their car than it is worth. RightIndem will change the customer engagement and address customer dissatisfaction.
Quantifyle enables consumers to use their wearable data to get health and life tailored insurance. This is a lifestyle app that motivates consumers to make healthier lifestyle choices and rewards them with lower cost insurance. The end result of measuring 5 key factors is an individual health score, akin to a credit score that determines your risk rating and how much you pay for credit.
Designed for millennials, this digital platform will provide easy to buy, easy to understand insurance for a generation disintermediated from the industry. The platform uses social profiling and background information to assess specific risks and inform the consumer of the cover they need in place to give them a “Safer” lifestyle.
The vision – to automate the insurance operating model. The real value here is that traditional insurers don’t have the IT in place to be able to connect with the InsurTechs. There is a headache for corporate CIOs when they look at the new breed of API based cloud platforms when their pre-Internet back end systems originated in 1993!
Covered previously by Daily Fintech here, Dublin based WeSavvy have a digital platform for wearables that provides meaningful data to rate health insurance. This is a cash back distribution model that encourages a lifestyle approach to health, wellbeing and insurance.
See previous articles as a Mentor in the SBC Insurance program
Daily Fintech Advisers provide strategic consulting to organizations with business and investment interests in Fintech.