Fair cop for the 80% but is it fair for the 20% that will deliver innovation, business value and the capabilities to both lead and support insurers through the challenges of transformation and innovation?
Insurance technology partners are hardly unique in the realms of hype and offering solutions that have no clear problem to solve. And it is a typical rule that 80% to 90% of newcos will fall in the dust of the OK Corral.
Not all "insurtechs" are startups. A fair number have proven their abilities to solve real problems, anticipate disruption from outside and work with and support insurers.
A combination of domain expertise plus the best technology and transformation minds together with farsighted vision, strategy and powers of execution are to be found. And in technology companies focussed wholly on insurance.
Is it a bad label to apply insurtech to these?
And insurers cannot wait for five years to wait and see which insurtechs survive the shootout at Insurtech Corral. In fact, there have already been many shoutouts and survivors that have proven capabilities.
Applying the classic "Technology Adoption Life Cycle" model the past five years have seen the first innovators/technology enthusiasts experiment in bootcamps, digital labs and trials galore.
A portion have moved beyond successful POCs as Early Adopters and Visionaries and "crossed the chasm" to expand bridgeheads with complete product solutions. These are the ones with viable products, business models and strategies.
The Insurtech Corral at its most brutal has seen many "insurtechs" fall in the chasm, and some that made it to the other side will still fall wounded by the wayside. Others will at best be acquired by technology companies, the digital giants or indeed incumbent insurers.
Those that survive will be able to carry the label insurtech with success and pride.
Don’t BlinkWhen’s the last time you read or heard any hype about service-oriented architecture (SOA)? How about robotic process automation (RPA)? Okay. Do I hear digital transformation? Can I get an opening bid on application service provider (ASP)? What about a couple of old chestnuts like best-of-breed (a favorite of equestrians everywhere) and end-to-end (if insurers bank on renewals and customer retention, does anyone ever wonder what the hell would happen if the vaunted policy lifecycle actually had an end?). News flash, kids. Insurtech is just another buzzword in the long history of ephemeral, terminological jargon. It’ll flash in the pan and be gone like all the rest.