Insurance in MOtion – Insurtech – Enabler or Disrupter?

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Insurtech Australia has teamed up with EY to undertake the first survey of its kind into the Australian insurtech ecosystem. Far from being an object of fear for incumbents, the survey found that most insurtechs see themselves as working within the system to improve it, rather than challenging the status quo.

Changing customer expectations, emerging technologies and sustained downward pressure on margins are having a profound effect on markets generally, and the insurance industry is no exception.

Insurtech is a response to this phenomenon. It involves the delivery of value for customers by using new technologies in the insurance industry value chain to solve known challenges (innovation) and discover unknown opportunities (transformation).

The survey found a vibrant insurtech ecosystem in Australia. By far the majority of Australian insurtechs (65%) see themselves as enablers of the insurance value chain, existing to improve current industry players. A further 25% see themselves as complimentary to the existing value chain. Only 10% identify themselves as disrupting or challenging the status quo.

The message for insurers (which equally applies to other industries) is clear. Incumbents should be embracing of digital solutions and increasing their levels of collaboration to take advantage of the offerings of the Australian insurtech market. As long as insurtechs and incumbents identify and leverage their strengths when seeking partnerships, this can present a great launchpad to obtain market advantage both here and overseas.

But incumbents need to move much faster in their assessments – most insurtechs are bankrolling themselves and have short timeframes for action.

The survey results can be accessed here.

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