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The assurtechs shape so as “catastrophic” insurance, say experts


Alain Castonguay

8 July 2019 09:30

Photo : Freepik

According to a trio of experts from Deloitte, the progress made in the digital world will shape irretrievably the way in which insurance products will be designed, consumed and distributed in the future.

The three experts presented their conference on the second wave in the digital universe of insurance in Quebec in the early April, in the framework of the third edition ofInsurTech Quebec.

Interviewed by their colleague, David Cummings, principal consultant in practice digital, Mukul Ahuja, leading strategic in Omnia I, the division in artificial intelligence at Deloitte, and Firas Osman, senior manager in technology, insurance, took stock of the innovations most likely to disrupt the insurance market in the coming years. According to them, ” the news reports of disruptive innovations in the insurance market are not new, but the daily reality “.

Several factors have an impact

Several factors external to the industry have a significant impact on the insurance, emphasizes Mukul Ahuja. The growing number of followers of the platforms of the sharing economy, connected objects, artificial intelligence and deep learning, data analysis, autonomous cars, cloud computing, etc, are all elements that are radically changing insurance needs.

In damage insurance, in 2018, we have seen appear a large number of new companies (startups) that digitize the claims process and claims handling, ” he adds.

In 2017, a dozen insurers have made investments ranging from 1.5 to 8.4 billion dollars to upgrade their platform and digitize business processes. As the network broker as direct insurers face the same constraints in this regard.

Exploit the markets neglected

The new entrants to exploit niche markets neglected by the insurers, existing and to come and meet the new needs of consumers. We see to the needs of temporary insurance, for the leased property, or sold through the platforms of the sharing economy, and finally to the digitization of exchanges between the consumer and his insurer.

According to Firas Osman, the customization of the claims process is one of the aspects where the insurers existing may still be distinguished, since the clients are then able to see the differences in service quality between companies. “For consumers, the claim is a step really important. The victim of a disaster expects his insurer is concerned about his claim, ” he says.

All of these external trends are likely to change the landscape of the insurance and to react to them, the manufacturers will have to revise their products. For example, with the growing number of users of property for renting or sharing, rather than owning, the property font will of individuals to commercial enterprises or managers of the platforms.

The life of the fonts will also be affected. Risk management will be subdivided into units reduced because the link between responsibility and the guarantee will be amended. The pooling of risks will be increasingly difficult to do, since the customers will be better informed about their own risk exposure, which makes them very demanding in terms of pricing.


The insurers existing three solutions to maintain their position in the market ahead of the new competition that brings startups. They can create new products, such as Desjardins group with Ajusto, or Cooperators with Duoo, partnering with startups that are using new technologies.

They can also create their own innovation lab to develop their expertise, what has been done with AXA Next, Desjardins Lab, Aviva Digital Garage and Intact Lab.

Finally, insurers can immerse themselves in the world of innovation by launching programs and incubators, to create a competition between startups that could become suppliers. Wawanesa, AllState, Intact, Aviva, and Foresters have funded programs that focus on innovation.

To take better advantage of this second wave of the insurtech, the insurance industry must exceed the expectations of consumers, find new markets, offer better warranties arising from a better reading of the needs of the customer and use the new tools to improve its performance and its productivity.

Experts from Deloitte have concluded their presentation by outlining the strategy of the consulting firm in the field of digitisation of insurance activities, based on a laboratory of innovation named The InsurCloud Lab. The proposed solutions can be easily implemented in the platform GuideWire. The firm has created its own tool, automated claims management, Jim, as well as another automated platform, called Frank, who assists SMES in managing their risks and insurance needs.

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