Insurtech Investments: Taking Ecosystem Enablement to the Next Level
I’ve had the pleasure of collaborating with many folks here at Guidewire who are working to fulfill one of our key missions: enabling a vibrant ecosystem that insurers can harness to accelerate innovation and differentiate. This is a goal we have not just as a company but as a participant in the P&C industry. Recently there’s been a tremendous amount of momentum in this area. The introduction of new integration approaches and developer tools, along with the pace at which new partners are signing on to participate in the Guidewire Marketplace, has resulted in a huge increase in the number of apps available. We’ve also introduced entirely new categories of solutions such as virtual claims inspections and automated AI-powered fraud detection.
Today, I’m proud to say that Guidewire is taking this mission to a new level with the announcement that we’ve made investments in a cohort of P&C-focused insurtechs: Betterview, CLARA Analytics, and IMburse. I had a chat with Guidewire’s Mike Chen, (Vice President, Corporate Development and architect of the deals) and Neil Betteridge (Vice President, Strategy) to learn more about these three insurtechs, why we chose to invest in them, and what that means for Guidewire customers.
RS: Let’s start with the “what.” What do each of these insurtech companies do?
MC: Yes, that’s a great place to start. Each one brings unique capabilities to its space, but all are focused on areas that are both complementary to our products and consistent with the future we see for P&C cloud platforms.
Betterview provides a geospatial analytics platform to help insurers better understand and manage commercial and residential property risk. Insurers use Betterview’s property analytics and geospatial imagery platform to better quote and underwrite risk, improve loss control, streamline renewals, and improve claims assessment processes.
CLARA Analytics applies AI-based techniques to unlock insights from medical notes, bills, and other documents surrounding a claim, and then generates predictions and alerts to help adjusters take action to settle claims smartly, including identifying optimal care providers and selecting optimal attorneys..
IMburse (based in Zurich, Switzerland) provides a modern payment platform that enables insurers to give customers a choice of paying via traditional digital routes like ACH and credit cards, or via more modern platforms like Venmo and PayPal, without having to integrate with each service in a customized way.
RS: Apart from the benefits that these companies provide insurers, why did we choose these three in particular?
NB: Guidewire is in a unique position to become the platform of choice for the P&C industry. So making investments in these insurtech firms accelerates that effort a great deal. Additionally, these three have all shown a dedication to the P&C industry, and that’s important to us. Moreover, they’ve all achieved some level of traction with our customer base. We want to continue to contribute to the evolution of the P&C industry by doing our part to enable more types of innovation that all insurers can take advantage of.
RS: Interesting! So that kind of leads to my next question: Will these firms be exclusive to Guidewire customers in any way?
MC: Not at all. We’re investing in these businesses so they can continue to expand their offerings via new capital. We’ll continue to partner with the most innovative and trusted players in P&C, and each of these companies likewise can choose to partner with other technology players in the space as well.
I want to thank Mike and Neil for spending a few minutes with me. Please join me in congratulating the teams at Betterview, CLARA Analytics, and IMburse.