What a week it’s been for deals, it’s like a ‘Dragon’s Den: Insurance Special’ out there this week. Plus, we look at how technology is still transforming the insurance sector. Let’s get into it.
DEALS ON WHEELS
This week saw GRP make another broker acquisition in the shape of Real Insurance, while rivals Aston Lark bought golf specialist Linkscover. On the start-up front Collective Benefits, who specialise in insurance solutions for freelancers and gig workers, raised £6m, while Allianz X bought a slice of heycar.
Now that move is very significant in the humble opinion of Insurance Edge mag, as embedded insurance, at the point of lease or hire, is probably the best way ahead in a car market that is transforming from owners to renters, just like the housing market in the UK.
START: WOMEN ARE KEEN ENTREPRENEURS
A survey landed on the IE desk this week from Next Insurance in the USA. Women there are more optimistic than men, on average, after the pandemic – and keener to start a small biz. The same trend could well be happening in the UK but we haven’t seen any evidence.
But when you couple that info with the ABI promo on job sharing, you can see that the timing is right for Commercial insurance that is much more flexible than the old premises-based set of risks. WFH means many things, including an increased exposure to cyber risks, hacking and reputational damage. It’s all out there – all you have to do is build an insurance product that fits a small biz lifestyle.
RUN: LET’S TALK LIFESTYLES
YuLife is an interesting brand and this week raised another $70m in funding to expand their employee benefits offer. This product is the sort of thing that Stubben Edge likes because it lets users customise the app, and essentially pick rewards for their various fitness and wellness actions.
That’s a lesson that so many Life insurance brands could learn, and by so doing, transform their `sell n forget’ products into something that’s ‘hipsterville’, relevant and hey…just works better for people.
GROW: CAR CRIME OFFERS BROKER OPPORTUNITY
Did you know that London is the car crime capital of the UK? You probably did, as you work in insurance and you’re living your best life. The Co-op Insurance released a survey this week which showed that parts of London have really high rates of theft and damage.
This set us thinking; how can an MGA or broker incentivise drivers to attach a yellow steering lock, a tracker device or perhaps actually put the car into their garage at night? The answer could be a premium reduction of course, or maybe discounts on Booking.com or another travel site, so you get that weekend break a bit cheaper? Then there’s the gap insurance aspect to insure on leased cars – not many drivers actually realise how much debt might be outstanding if the car vanishes.
Guess what we are saying is, being on the policyholder’s side and thinking of ways to save them a bit of a headache – can be helpful all round.
AND FINALLY, WILLIS TOWERS SEE MORE AUTOMATION
One final thought from Willis Towers Watson, who studied the insurer market and found that most big names expect to see a rapid increase in automated systems over the next 5 years.
This will have such a profound effect on claims, it’s hard to assess exactly how that sub-sector of the insurance industry will look by 2026. The tech that is being used in modern cars, smartphones and other digital devices mean that insurers and brokers will have digital breadcrumb trail to examine in detail at the point when a claim is made. Voice analysis, location data, speed, previously used IP or email addresses etc.
The future is automated, that’s for certain. But how brokers can build the human factor into their products and branding will probably make the difference between success and being out-paced.
And on that bombshell…