This is a chilling wake up call for the UK and European insurance markets!
For some time, I have been evangelising about an existing insurance story, which should have sent European insurers into panic. But there has been almost no response.
49 months ago a consortium of the largest tech based retail companies in China (Alibaba, Tencent etc.) started an insurance company to provide cover for delivery and returns of their goods. They are 100% digital, using the very latest technology, as you would expect. They very rapidly expanded and within 18 months had $1bn turnover and were profitable. Today Zhong An has written 8billion policies across multiple lines and has 600m customers. In one day they sold 100million shipping returns policies. They recently had an IPO in Hong Kong valuing the company at £29bn.
I will repeat: $29billion valuation from scratch - All in 49 months, using digital technology!
And Amazon has Echo and Dot to build on in the home insurance market, so is already ahead of the game.
Meanwhile, in Europe the traditional insurers spend almost all their IT budgets on maintaining legacy policy admin systems which are 20 years passed their prime and can't help them with winning and retaining customers.
Am I missing something here or do all insurers want to go the same way as bookshops, taxi drivers and hotels?
Rearrange the words: Fiddles, Nero, Burns, Rome!
Internet-sales giant Amazon is currently recruiting insurance professionals in London in a bid to disrupt the insurance market in countries throughout Europe. Amazon sees many of its technology products, such as voice-activated digital assistants like the Amazon Echo and Dot, as entry points to providing for customers’ insurance needs, according to analytics firm GlobalData.