Welcome to iLeads Insurance Market Minute, where we bring you the latest, most relevant news regarding the insurance market. Last week you were reading Insurers Win Restaurants’ COVID-19 Cases. This week we’re bringing you:
Insurers can’t go it alone in the new normal*
The following is an editorial by Alicja Grzadkowska, senior news editor at Insurance Business. To reach out to Alicja, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are many capabilities that insurers excel at, from conducting risk analysis to providing critical solutions that protect companies’ and individuals’ bottom lines. However, there are also many areas in which the insurance industry needs some help to meet insureds’ needs – and that’s not a bad thing, especially when there are plenty of partners in other industries, namely technology, who can put new capabilities into the hand of insurers without the cost and hassle of going it alone.
Partnerships between insurers and firms operating in the tech sector have made headlines more frequently over the past few months. Recent ones have included Aon collaborating with Nayms on a cryptocurrency pilot, Sompo International working with Flock on commercial drone solutions, and Blink partnering with Allianz Partners to roll out a travel disruption insurance platform, to name a few.
These types of collaborations are nothing new and have been around in the industry for many years now, as insurtechs have gained a foothold in insurance and have become seen as partners more than direct competitors to incumbents. However, experts predict that, in part thanks to the disruption brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, these partnerships will become much more popular, valuable, and necessary over the coming years.
And there’s a good reason for these predictions. For one, COVID-19 has demonstrated that insurers still have a way to go when it comes to meeting customers’ expectations about their insurance needs, from being able to access their policies anywhere and at any time, to creating solutions that address the fast-evolving risks facing commercial and personal insureds today. In some cases, insurance professionals within organizations are still siloed from their data analysis and IT departments, leaving two groups who should be united working on opposite sides of the building, metaphorically speaking.
While there has been quite a bit of innovation in certain lines of insurance, other areas have fallen short in technology adoption, such as the specialty lines space. According to Insurwave CEO David Power, there’s a real opportunity in this space for technology to partner with brokers and insurers.
Ryan Specialty files IPO documents with SEC*
Ryan Specialty Group LLC Tuesday said it plans to become a publicly held company.
The wholesaler said in a statement it has confidentially submitted a draft registration form, Form S-1, with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission relating to a proposed initial public offering of its Class A common stock.
The statement said the number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined.
Ryan Specialty said it expects to begin the IPO following completion of the SEC review process, subject to market and other conditions.
Ryan Specialty was established in 2010 by former Aon PLC CEO Patrick G. Ryan as a holding company for various specialty intermediaries, including a wholesale brokerage, managing general agencies and managing general underwriters.
Is the insurance industry prepared for new tech risks?*
Technology is creating new risks that the insurance industry is currently unprepared for, according to an expert at INSTANDA, a business platform for the insurance industry.
“Risk, the bedrock of the insurance industry, is undergoing a silent revolution,” said Gari Gono, INSTANDA’s head of solutions. “While digital transformation has been the bastion of change for insurers over the last year, there has been far less said about how technology is changing insurance from the outside in.”
Gono said that over the next five to 10 years, “insurers will have to create entirely new product lines” as technological advances create new risks.
“Difficult conversations will need to be had over liability – if a driverless car is to blame for a road incident, who is responsible?” Gono said. “Only those insurers that adapt to these risks will survive and thrive. At the same time, with the developments of data and AI, incumbents will soon know more about risk than ever before. This is creating an opportunity for insurers to embed themselves deeper into consumers’ daily lives, in the same way we have seen with online banking apps.”
Gono said that if technological advancement continues at its current pace, insurers will be able to use their knowledge of risk to offer better recommendations on how customers can protect themselves.
“Last month’s annual CES technology event provides a good starting point for exploring these issues,” Gono said. “The event saw bigger, better, and thinner TVs and laptops. It also presented groundbreaking solutions designed to improve life and reduce the risk of accidents or death. But we should question if it is really that straightforward when it comes to insurance.”
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