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September 22, 2016

8 Exemplars of Insurtech Innovation

Summary:

The eight winners of the SMA Innovation in Action Awards include Figo Pet Insurance, Meteo, Motorists Insurance Group and Texas Mutual.

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The winners of the SMA Innovation in Action Awards are Figo Pet Insurance, Meteo Protect, Motorists Insurance Group and Texas Mutual Insurance, among insurers, and Baseline Telematics, Life.io, Octo Telematics and Pristine, among service providers.

SMA launched this awards program five years ago to recognize projects and solutions that have reshaped one or more of the foundational areas for the Next-Gen Insurer: business model, customer, innovative culture and technology and data.

See also: Innovation — or Just Innovative Thinking?  

The insurer winners of 2016 SMA Innovation in Action Awards, in alphabetical order, are:

  • Figo Pet Insurance, for its unique approach to the pet insurance business model through the innovative use of emerging technologies. The proprietary Pet Cloud platform offers policyholders real-time pet GPS tracking, cloud storage for medical records, mobile claims filing, social pet profiles, a pet-friendly business locator, texts and alerts for coming shots and appointments. Figo’s reimagination of the pet insurance value proposition is focused on making life easier for people and their pets. Figo’s holistic approach offers a meaningful example of how the insurance industry can reinvent its business models and customer engagement strategies for the digital world.
  • Meteo Protect, for offering customized, data-driven agricultural insurance for weather-related risks. Customers can choose each parameter of their weather policies, including crop, period of coverage, specific weather event and intensity and payment amount. Meteo Protect’s Vivaldi platform aggregates huge volumes of weather-related data from 40 years of climate history; current readings from satellites, sensors, gauges and other global weather data sources; and commodity prices and crop yields. Meteo Protect’s focus on the changing nature of weather risks and emphasis on the uncertain future expands the possibilities for the personalization of insurance products and services.
  • Motorists Insurance Group, for creating an innovation space as part of the cultural shift necessary for its 10-year vision of organizational transformation. This vision hinges on Motorists’ reinvention as an “85-year-old startup” designed for innovation and collaboration. The Intersection, the company’s new collaboration space, represents a complete redesign of a 1940s space to prioritize natural light, bright colors and transparency. It facilitates global collaboration through the use of cutting-edge technology, enabling work to shift seamlessly across time zones and continents. Motorists demonstrates that no company is ever too established to change, and that vast and intangible changes like developing an innovative culture can start small and still have a big impact.
  • Texas Mutual Insurance, for “Safety in a Box,” a groundbreaking virtual-reality app designed to teach construction workers the value of following safety procedures. The app is available for download to a user’s phone, which can be inserted into a Google Cardboard virtual-reality viewer for an interactive, 360-degree viewing experience in English or Spanish. The user can experience the four most dangerous construction site accidents, including a collapsing trench, and see how safety choices determine the outcome of each scenario. Texas Mutual is distributing the boxes for free at construction industry events to promote workplace safety and reinvent the company’s role as a workers’ comp insurer.

A compendium of case studies detailing the success stories of the four winners and the 16 other insurers that participated in the SMA Innovation in Action Awards program is available here.

The solution provider winners of 2016 SMA Innovation in Action Awards, in alphabetical order, are:

  • Baseline Telematics, for its BaseDrive telematics solution, which leverages a mobile app and in-car Bluetooth dongle to give insurers everything they need to create their own usage-based insurance (UBI) programs.
  • Life.io, for its policyholder engagement platform for physical, emotional and financial health, which uses behavioral economics, predictive analytics and personalized content to drive high levels of sustained policyholder engagement and the achievement of personal goals.
  • Octo Telematics, for its telematics offerings that deliver behavioral, contextual and driving analytics, enabling insurers to provide value-added services for policyholders such as UBI pricing, loyalty programs, vehicle diagnostics, location-based services, mobile connections and more.
  • Pristine, for Pristine Eyesight, a video communication platform for smart glasses (e.g., Google Glass) and mobile devices that enables long-distance collaboration between field professionals via real-time audio and video connection.

A collection of case studies profiling the four solution provider winners, with details on the rest of the 27 solution provider awards submissions, will be released in early October.

See also: Insurance Innovation: No Longer Oxymoron  

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About the Author

Deb Smallwood, the founder of Strategy Meets Action, is highly respected throughout the insurance industry for strategic thinking, thought-provoking research and advisory skills. Insurers and solution providers turn to Smallwood for insight and guidance on business and IT linkage, IT strategy, IT architecture and e-business.

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