EP 33 – Global InsurTech Report for Q1 2024 – Andrew Johnston – Global Head of InsurTech at Gallagher Re

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Michael Waitze worked in Global Finance for more than 20 years, employed by firms like Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, primarily in Tokyo.  Michael lived and worked in Tokyo from February 1990 until December 2011.  Michael always maintained a particular focus on how technology could be used to make businesses more efficient and to drive P/L growth. Michael is a leader in the digital media space, building one of the biggest and fastest-growing podcast listener bases in the region.  His AsiaTechPodcast.com show has listeners in more than 130 countries and his company, Michael Waitze Media produces some of Asia’s most popular podcasts.

Dr. Andrew Johnston is global head of InsurTech for Gallagher Re, based in Nashville. He heads a practice of about 30 people from various backgrounds charged with vetting hundreds of technology candidates on behalf of Gallagher Re clients, traditional insurers, or incumbents. Andrew and his team then support (re)insurance company clients select appropriate technological solutions for their businesses, in addition to providing insurance technology related consulting and advisory services. He also represents a growing number of InsurTech clients who themselves originate risk (for whom he and his team provide reinsurance broking services). Andrew is also the author and editor of the Gallagher Re Global InsurTech Report (formerly WTW Quarterly InsurTech briefing).

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Recently, we had the privilege of speaking with ⁠Andrew Johnston⁠, the Global Head of InsurTech at ⁠Gallagher Re⁠, delving into his ‘⁠Global InsurTech Report for Q1 2024⁠’. Our discussion yielded valuable insights into the evolving landscape of InsurTech, shedding light on key trends and opportunities. 

Here are five notable insights gleaned from our conversation:

1. The Shift Towards Early-Stage Investments

One significant trend highlighted by Andrew was the shift towards early-stage investments in the InsurTech space. While there has been a slight decline in overall funding, the number of individual deals has increased, particularly in the early stages. This surge in early-stage investments underscores the vibrant and dynamic nature of the InsurTech ecosystem. Insurers and reinsurers are increasingly recognizing the potential of partnering with innovative startups to drive growth and innovation in the industry.

2. The Democratization of Funding

Andrew emphasized the democratization of funding as a notable trend in the InsurTech landscape. Despite the decrease in mega-round funding, there has been a proliferation of smaller deals, indicating a broader distribution of capital across the ecosystem. This democratization of funding is a positive development, as it allows a greater number of startups to access capital and pursue innovative solutions. It also reflects the growing appetite among insurers and reinsurers to invest in early-stage ventures and foster strategic partnerships.

3. The Rise of Personalized Insurance Solutions

A compelling example shared by Andrew was the emergence of personalized insurance solutions tailored to specific industries and risk profiles. He highlighted the case of Rainbow, an InsurTech startup specializing in providing customized insurance products for restaurants. By leveraging AI-driven data analysis, Rainbow can assess the unique risk factors associated with individual businesses and tailor insurance policies accordingly. This focus on personalization not only enhances risk management but also improves the overall customer experience, setting a precedent for innovation in the industry.

4. The Transformative Potential of AI

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is playing an increasingly pivotal role in driving innovation across various facets of the insurance value chain. Andrew underscored the transformative potential of AI in areas such as underwriting, claims processing, and predictive analytics. By harnessing AI-powered solutions, insurers can streamline operations, enhance risk assessment capabilities, and deliver more personalized services to customers. The integration of AI technologies is enabling insurers to stay ahead of the curve in an increasingly digital and data-driven landscape.

5. The Importance of Strategic Partnerships

Lastly, Andrew emphasized the significance of strategic partnerships in driving innovation and growth in the InsurTech sector. As insurers and reinsurers seek to navigate the complexities of the digital age, strategic collaborations with innovative startups can provide access to cutting-edge technologies and expertise. By fostering mutually beneficial partnerships, insurers can accelerate their digital transformation efforts and deliver greater value to customers.

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