COLUMBUS, Ohio, May 1, 2020 : Insurtech startup Branch has launched operations in Texas, the company’s fifth statewide expansion since launching in Ohio in August 2019. Branch is shaking up the insurance industry, providing a reimagined way to bundle home and auto insurance in as little as 30 seconds. Using technology and automation, Branch has re-engineered the experience to be quicker and more efficient, making it easier than ever for clients to save money.
Many know that bundling home and auto insurance can help them save. In fact, a NerdWallet article stated that “getting two or more policies from the same company will mean discounts — as much as 25% off a homeowners policy — depending on the insurer.” The hassle often lies in obtaining a bundle. Where most traditional insurance companies require clients to fill out applications with hundreds of questions, Branch developed a way to bundle insurance with just two: name and address.
“We’re excited to help Texans save by bundling their home and auto insurance with ease,” said Branch Cofounder and CEO Steve Lekas. “Our mission is to make high-quality insurance less expensive through the power of technology and community, so that all of us can be insured.”
Behind Branch’s desire to improve the insurance-buying experience is a deep-rooted commitment to restoring the industry to its original intent: a force of communal good. That’s why Branch has not only made it easier to bundle, but is also developing tools to help customers continually lower their own prices, as well as helping who are un- or underinsured through their nonprofit entity, SafetyNest®.
To learn more about how you can start saving an average of $517 per year on your bundled home and auto insurance, head to www.ourbranch.com.
Branch was founded in 2018 by insurance veteran Steve Lekas and tech entrepreneur Joe Emison. Branch taps into the power of community to make insurance accessible and affordable for everyone, utilizing innovative technology makes it easier than ever to save money by bundling Home and Auto Insurance in seconds. Branch Insurance has launched in five states (AZ, IL, MO, OH and TX) and is underwritten by General Security National Insurance Company (GSNIC) an AM Best A+ Financial Rated insurance company and is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio.
Partnerships and new products launches among the recent trends in travel insurance market
The demand for travel insurance is surging significantly due to an increase in revenge travel activities during the post-pandemic era. Many countries lifted restrictions related to travel and tourism, and the travel industry is on the path to recovery after suffering considerably from the ban and restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic. In addition to revenge travel, there are several other reasons for surging travel insurance demand. The loss of baggage, sickness, accident and other unforeseen circumstances lead people to avail travel insurance and free themselves from the financial burden that may follow.
Market players adopted various strategies such as partnerships and new product launches to cater to the travel insurance needs of travelers and raise their market stakes. Insurance providers are joining hands with other insurance providers to solve the existing issues and get benefited from each other’s expertise and offerings. Online insurance offerings are increasing day by day and the partnership strategy is aimed at providing a wide range of products under a single platform. Moreover, new products are launched to cater to the demands of international travelers. Moreover, technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) are incorporated into online platforms to provide a seamless claim settlement experience and raise customer retention rates. The dynamics of the industry are changing, and the following are the trends taking place across the world.
Partnership is one of the major strategies adopted by travel insurance policy providers and insurance platforms. The major reason behind adopting this strategy is to reach a wide audience and increase the market stake. Insurtech firms, which imply insurance technology firms, are also joining hands with various insurance providers to provide different products through their online platforms. InsuranceDekho, one of the insurtech firms, partnered with HDFC Ergo, Care, Reliance General, Bajaj Allianz, ICICI Lombard, and others for providing travel insurance. The firm’s online platform offers travel insurance plans for nearly 198 countries. It offers coverage for family, student, individual, and corporate travelers.
The insurtech firm covers a wide range of requirements under insurance cover. The covers for flight delay, baggage loss, emergency medical expenses, passport loss, and others are provided for travelers. Ankit Agrawal, the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer at InsuranceDekho, highlighted that international travel activities are surging at 76%YoY during the post-pandemic era. This adoption is widening the market for travel insurance providers. This is the opportunity that the firm aims to tap into and expand its market share through partnerships with other companies. The firm also aims to provide one-stop solution for the travel insurance requirement of travelers on its online platform. Through diversified insurance options and a wide range of plans, market players are trying to capture the attention on their platform and fulfill the insurance needs of travelers.
The trend of partnership continues to gain momentum across the world as market players adopt various strategies to increase customer satisfaction and retention. Bimaplan, one of the insurtech startups, joined hands with zingbus, an intercity travel provider. Bimaplan will offer insurance policy as an additional benefit to users of zingbus through the integration of insurance plans into the existing products. This partnership provides benefits to both parties involved and solves existing issues. Through the integration of insurance plans into zingbus products, Bimaplan solved the issues related to technological and operational procedures of offering insurance policies to its travelers. On the other hand, Bimaplan will avail increased exposure for its policies on the platform of zingbus.
Bimaplan integrated its UNO platform into the platform of zingbus. It provides different types of coverage including travel accidental death, emergency medical cover, permanent total disablement, emergency medical evacuation cover, loss of baggage, and others. This integration will help zingbus in improving the customer experience and boosting the rate of retention. During the post-pandemic era, travel activities are increasing considerably and travel insurance is considered as an essential tool for protection against uncertainties. The partnership strategy will help in improving insurance adoption among travelers and raise the market stake. These strategies are positively impacting the travel insurance market. According to the report published by Next Move Strategy Consulting, the global travel insurance market generated USD 17.58 billion in 2021, and is expected to reach USD 58.93 billion by 2030.
The trend of launching new products also gains traction in the travel insurance industry as market players adopt different strategies to cater to evolving requirements of travelers. As many countries made it mandatory to avail travel insurance while applying for visa, market players launched international travel insurance products in the market. TIDLOR Insurance Broker, one of the leading insurance providers in Thailand, launched a new product for providing protection during travel activities across different destinations around the globe. Launched as “Travel Insurance for protective holiday,” the firm aims to offer coverage for sickness, accidents, deaths, and other conditions. The firm set the maximum coverage of nearly 5,000,000 baht. Moreover, the company offered protections against luggage loss and other asset losses along with delays in flights. The company aims to unburden the travelers by insuring them for their journeys as the healthcare costs in many countries are higher as compared to Thailand and other countries.
As the travel sector is booming post-pandemic, the adoption of travel insurance is increasing. Consequently, the claims of travel insurance due to loss of baggage, sickness, and other conditions are rising. To enable faster claim processing and offer a seamless experience to travelers, market players are launching artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled platforms. Liberty General Insurance launched AI-based automated claim processing platform. This platform requires minimal human intervention and deploys an algorithm based on AI. This platform enables different processes related to claim settlement processing such as standardized claim assessment, determining the accurate settlement amount, and others. This platform also addresses the queries of customers around the clock, and offers the facility of uploading documents, viewing claiming reports, and determining the status of settlement. The company highlighted that the platform launch is aimed at offering quicker, smarter, and more seamless experience of claim settlement experience than before. Such platforms are launched for improving customer experience and retention rates.
How AI is Transforming Insurtech
Technological advancements are continuing to transform the way we live, work, and get insurance. The insurance industry is being disrupted by tools designed to improve efficiency and accuracy; this evolution has been dubbed insurtech, and startups across the country and globe are implementing AI into their insurance coverage process.
One of the biggest benefits for utilizing artificial intelligence in the insurance sector is risk mitigation. Computers can scour through data to make more informed decisions in seconds.
Keeping reading to learn about how artificial intelligence is improving processes in the insurance industry.
What is Artificial Intelligence?
To understand how AI is transforming insurance it’s important to understand what artificial intelligence is and the many ways it can be beneficial in risk mitigation.
Artificial intelligence is a technology that helps computers solve problems and think rationally, similar to how humans make decisions. Computers can scour through tons of data to make a rational decision based on facts and critical thinking way faster than a human ever could.
Two of the most popular sectors of AI are deep learning and machine learning. Machine learning predicts outcomes and weighs risks by analyzing data to find trends and predict future outcomes. For example, a car insurance company could use data around specific age groups and genders to predict driving patterns.
Deep learning improves speed and efficiency by teaching computers to lead by example. Artificial neural networks help computers complete tasks that human workers would normally accomplish, allowing workers to focus on more high-level tasks and spend less time on repetitive ones.
Artificial Intelligence and Insurance
AIs main goal is to teach machines to make trusted, accurate decisions that are free from human error. This makes insurtech especially valuable to insurance companies who can save big by predicting outcomes and identifying risks.
Here are some of the ways insurtech companies are utilizing AI today:
- Automated underwriting
AI is improving speed and efficiency in consumer insurance through automated underwriting. This is speeding up the claims process by having customers file claims directly online rather than talking to an insurance agent. Users can submit photos of an accident and the automated underwriting software can assess damage cost instantly. Other features of automated underwriting include built-in claim tracking and reporting. SAAS software makes this possible, paper-less, and free from human error.
- Preventing Fraud and Blocking Hacking
Insurtech is also helping prevent insurance fraud. The FBI estimates that approximately $40 billion is stolen through insurance fraud each year, which in turn actually raises all customer rates while also impacting business costs. AI can track irregular customer behaviors and claims to identify fraud in real time. The technology can also help block hacking.
- Adding Personalization to Solutions
No two accidents are ever the same. Insurtech allows carriers and customers to personalize their solutions. If someone had a bad driving history but has since changed their behavior, they can request an AI tracking application to analyze their driving and then generate a rate based on current behavior. Safe drivers would be less risky to insure and be charged a lower rate.
- Offering 24/7 Accessibility for Customers
Another thing that artificial intelligence can provide is 24/7 access without having to employ 24/7 staff. Accidents can happen anytime but chat box software allows customers to get information (even at 3 a.m. on a Monday) without having to get an agent on the line. This allows insurance companies to provide around-the-clock value while saving big on staffing costs.
Artificial intelligence allows insurance companies to make faster, more informed decisions while also speeding up their processes, all to the benefit of the customer. Accurate risk mitigation ultimately gets customers more accurate rates and helps insurance companies save.
To learn about the startups that are utilizing AI to transform the insurance industry check out the infographic from The Zebra below!
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