D-Weekly: The #WhoHaHa for the week ending in July 22
D-Weekly is here to shed light on insurance happenings in a clever short weekly dose of ‘WhoHaha‘ à la IE style. The news is formatted around “WhoHaha”, the acronym for Wonder, Happy, Optimistic, Hopeful, Anxious, Hopeless and Ace. In other words, D-Weekly dares to put a little sentiment in a whole lot of coverage!
Made Some Wonder
Bold Penguin. N26. P2PProtect
- Ohio-based Bold Penguin announced it had launched an agent-facing, commercial-focused portal. All else TBD.
- Berlin-based startup Number26 is now N26. It has obtained a European banking license and it plans to offer insurance products within the next 6 to 12 months, probably through partnerships.
- Timothy Li of Kuber Financial and Tang Loaec have joined forces to create a JV called P2PProtect, a new risk-sharing platform in US.
Made Some Happy
Pillar Technologies. ReviewTrackers. Skycure.
- Pillar Technologies announced it has secured $425,000 in seed funding from VC, to name one. The startup offers onsite sensors that can detect hostile conditions on construction sites and can send alerts to companies when conditions become dangerous.
- Chicago-based ReviewTrackers has announced a $4 million in a funding round led by AmFam Ventures to boost development of its customer feedback platform, bringing its total funding to date to $6.1 million.
- Israeli mobile threat sensor startup Skycure announced it has raised $16.5 million in series B bringing its total funding to date to $27.5 million because “enterprise mobile security is a burgeoning, multi-billion-dollar market”. New York Life is a backer. AirWatch is a competitor.
Made Some Optimistic
Hero Insurance. Northwestern Mutual. Sberbank Life Insurance.
- Meet ‘Hero Insurance’ in English. A Hamburg-based digital broker-slash-mobile app that allows customers to purchase personal liability insurance in 3 minutes from NV Insurance. Founded by Florian Knörrich and Stefan Herbst.
- According to Northwestern Mutual, the majority of Americans prefer “People Plus Technology”.
- CEO of Sberbank Life Insurance Maxim Chernin is offering Raichu fans $800 worth of coverage in exchange for their nickname, real name, birthday, location and email.
Made Some Hopeful
EQ Insurance. Swiss Re Insurtech Accelerator.
- Singapore-based P2P lending platform Validus Capital has partnered with EQ Insurance to offer investor protection on some of the financing it provides to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), claiming to be the first platform in Singapore to offer such coverage.
- Swiss Re Insurtech Accelerator in Bangalore announced its first cohort. Take a look:
- GOQii– a one-on-one mobile coaching and fitness tracking that helps individuals make the shift to a healthier lifestyle
- Touchkin– a predictive care platform to enable proactive personalized care
- Datasigns– a risk platform that aims to democratize credit by offering an alternative and smarter way to assess borrowers
- eKincare– an end-to-end wellness platform that integrates medical records, healthcare services and leverages predictive analytics to design wellness initiatives
- Niki.ai– an AI-fueled smart-purchasing assistant
- Arya.ai– a developer platform for deep learning
Recall list of insurance accelerators below.
Made Some Anxious
- Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary National Indemnity Company, aka NICO, has agreed to acquire New York’s largest underwriter of medical professional liability insurance Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company, better yet MLMIC, cause life is short. Warren Buffett says MLMIC is “is a gem of a company”. MLMIC says, now is as good time as ever to seek A.M. Best rating. Bottom Line: the world has lost a mutual as MLMIC, which is a mutual insurance company, will have to transform into a stock company.
Made Some Hopeless
- Chicago-based insurance agency Insureon formed a new MGA unit called Insureon Underwriting Managers that will operate under its existing wholesale brokerage Insurance Noodle and will look to provide a market for hard-to-place-slash-unique risks that primary carriers typically reject.
The Ace of Digital
Absa. Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance.
- Absa, the African bank-slash-insurance group known for its retail branch that includes a foosball table and arcade machines, has launched a “full blown banking service inside Facebook messenger”. Think: customers are able to retrieve their account balance, buy airtime, data, or pre-paid electricity as well as pay existing beneficiaries. This is an extension to @AbsaChatBanking; same idea, different platform. Bottom Line: a fad you must fiddle with?
- Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company has announced its plans to deploy 100 Pepper robots to several of its branches come October that will help explain simple insurance products and accompany staff on sales meetings.