Cicero Research was delighted to host an expert panel discussion on the future of Insurance Technology (InsurTech).
Taking place on the morning of Tuesday 29 November, the event brought together experts from industry and the media, including Huw Evans, Director General, Association of British Insurers (ABI), Lynsey Barber, Technology Editor, City AM, Renaud Million, Co-Founder and CEO, Spixii, and Jonathan Swift, Content Director, Insurance Division, Incisive Media.
Opening the event, Mark Twigg, Executive Director, Cicero Research, presented exclusive consumer research. The study found that the insurance market trails behind other consumer markets – coming bottom of the pile – with just 4 per cent of respondents claiming the sector provides ‘Excellent’ digital services. Wearable technology does present many opportunities, however, with respondents indicating that they are likely to double the size of the wearable fitness bands, smart watches and fitness watches markets over the next 12 months.
Following the presentation of these findings, Huw Evans opened the panel discussion, noting that it is impossible to predict the ultimate destination of the digital revolution, with people in the middle of revolutions throughout history being unable to foresee where they will conclude. The ABI projects that the equivalent of 20,000 years of technological advancement will take place during the next 100 years, leading to seismic changes in the shape of established markets. He was “particularly excited” about the future prospect for big data to help consumers insure their entire lives, rather than insuring individual products and parts of their lives while having no insurance over other areas.
Lynsey Barber used her remarks to note that developments in InsurTech were occurring in an opposite fashion to advancements in other sectors, with established players and innovators working together in partnerships rather than competing against one another. This has occurred due to the nature of the insurance market, the panel agreed, with higher regulatory thresholds and barriers than other sectors, with large, established players and bigger supply chains than other sectors where technology has already taken hold.
Million introduced Spixii to the audience, highlighting that the firm has identified that customers do not trust their insurer, but they do trust the recommendations of their friends and families. As a result, Spixii has developed an automated insurance agent dedicated to making insurance easier, simplifying the process for consumers and removing jargon. While Spixii does not alter the insurance product, it does fundamentally change the way in which it is sold to consumers. Million added that investors across the EU are much more risk averse than in the US, providing another reason to partner with established players.
Swift noted that during his 18 years as an insurance journalist this is the “most exciting time” to be involved in the sector. He noted a personal anecdote, with Insurance Post setting up a digital network approximately six years ago that was eventually disbanded due to lack of members. Two weeks after setting up a similar network this year, membership numbers were higher than they ever had been during their previous initiative, suggesting that the sector now has huge appetite for embracing digital.
Cicero Research is the financial services research agency with over a decade of experience delivering research and consultancy services to the sector. We provide a full service offering designed to connect you with the markets you serve. To find out more about our services, click here.
Tweets by @CiceroGlobal