Insurtech’s effects become clearer
Insurtech and its potential for re/insurers was the main theme of the annual Baden-
Baden Intelligent Insurer Roundtable sponsored by S&P Global Ratings. Executives
representing reinsurers, service providers, cedants and brokers debated a number of key
issues at the event.
While primary insurers increasingly
have a better idea of how they want
to leverage the potential of a wide range of
forms of insurtech for them and their industry,
reinsurers are more specific in their focus:
they aim to become more efficient through
That was one of the findings of the annual
Intelligent Insurer Roundtable held at the Baden-
Baden Reinsurance Symposium and sponsored
by S&P Global Ratings. A panel of senior
executives representing reinsurers, service
providers, cedants and brokers debated a
number of key issues at the event.
“Blockchain technology will change our
industry to a similar extent as the move from
dial phones to smartphones,” said Peak Re
CEO Franz-Josef Hahn. “The step it will move
us forward in one go is huge.”
Hahn believes that blockchain will have the
biggest impact in claims payment, which has to
be accurate and fast at the same time. Founded
less than 10 years ago in Hong Kong, Peak Re
has fewer legacy issues than older players to
deal with, allowing it to pay 90 percent of all
claims within five working days, he claimed.
But Peak Re is about to speed up the
processes significantly by moving on to a
blockchain platform. The company expects the
move to make claims payment more efficient,
reducing the processing time significantly from
the current five days. In future it will happen
within seconds, Hahn said.
VIG Re CEO Johannes Martin Hartmann
noted that the underlying issue is that
1. Johannes Bender, director, insurance ratings
EMEA, S&P Global Ratings
2. David Flandro, global head of analytics,
3. Franz-Josef Hahn, chief executive officer,
4. Johannes Martin Hartmann, chairman of
the board of directors, VIG Re
5. Adrian Jones, head of strategy &
development, SCOR Global P&C
6. Frank Reichelt, managing director, market
executive Germany & Nordics, Swiss Re
7. Massimo Reina, chief executive officer of
Continental Europe and MENA,
8. Alkis Tsimaratos, managing director and
head of Europe West, Willis Re
Moderator: Christian Wuestner, Intelligent Insurer
transaction costs in the re/insurance industry
are extremely high and need to be addressed.
Blockchain may be the solution to it.
While insurtech may become a disruptor for
the industry, it is not a threat to traditional players,
Hartmann said. He argued that the natural role
of insurers will be to partner with technology
companies—with insurers securing innovation
and tech companies gaining distribution and size.
“What we are more likely to see is that
insurtech companies try to partner with
traditional players because they clearly have
something to offer in the value chain but really
struggle to be client-based,” Hartmann said.
“We at VIG are trying to incorporate insurtech
players and partner with them in order to
revitalise and redefine our processes,” he added.
David Flandro, global head of analytics at
JLT Re, agreed. “It’s different from fintech,
which did in some ways squeeze out and
transform the banking sector,” he said.
“Many insurtechs are getting their funding
from existing insurance players,” he added. While
many startups are operating in partnerships with
big players, Flandro noted that only 2 percent
of the new companies are likely to be successful.
Insurtech developments are going to affect
cedants and carriers in different ways. Blockchain
20 | BADEN-BADEN TODAY | DAY 2: Tuesday October 24 2017 www.intelligentinsurer.com | www.bermudareinsurancemagazine.com