Car insurance distributors honcho have met in London to help launch the new voice of the UK's insurtech community, Insurtech UK.
Following ongoing discussions throughout the summer, its founders, which includes honcho as the only North East member, held its first inaugural meeting in the capital with the aim of supporting the burgeoning insurtech sector.
The organisation has said it will also promote the benefits that new innovative companies can bring to customers and UK plc as a whole.
20 members were in attendance and the group has said its intention is to develop into a formal association in 2019, with an initial five-year mandate.
As well as supporting insurtechs with some of their day-to-day challenges, Insurtech UK will seek to drive forward conversations with government, industry and regulators, as well as working alongside incumbents and established trade associations to address many of the issues facing the UK’s insurance industry.
Speaking at the launch, honcho CEO Gavin Sewell, said:“The insurtech industry in the UK, as per the wider fintech industry, is very London-centric.
“We are one of the very few founder members of Insurtech UK outside of London and we are very keen to demonstrate that it is not a requirement for innovative businesses such as ours to be based in London to succeed.
“We are convinced that there are strong benefits to being in the North East of England with respect to innovation capability, lifestyle and cost of doing business.
“We are very excited to be a founding member of this organisation and have high hopes for its impact on the Insurance industry in the UK and beyond.”
At the meeting, a discussion on what Insurtech UK intends to achieve in its first six months and how it would be structured was completed.
Establishing an interim Council, along with three working groups covering Communications, Operations and Best Practice were announced and discussed.
James York, Founder of the London-based insurance intermediary, Worry and Peace, continues:“This is an exciting step towards building the voice of the UK’s growing insurtech industry.
“We’ve had tremendous support so far from the community as well as the wider insurance ecosystem. We’re keen to get started and build on the fantastic momentum already gained. We look forward to collaborating with many partners and help build a sector that has true potential to be world leading.”
Insurtech UK said it intends to be supported by the public affairs consultancy Political Intelligence, who have experience providing secretariat functions to trade associations and industry alliances.
The collective is currently accepting applications for membership, as well as for associate membership and partnership opportunities. Further details of the benefits of joining or partnering with Insurtech UK can be supplied upon request from the Secretariat: Political Intelligence.
Gavin Sewell added: “The wider insurance industry is well represented by industry bodies such as the Association of British Insurers, the British Insurance Broker Association and the Chartered Insurance Institute, all of which do great work on behalf of the industry.
“Whilst they might have an element of focus on insurtech, it is not their primary focus, and that’s where Insurtech UK will come. Insurtechs are significantly different to traditional insurers. They approach consumers in a vastly different way, and they potential seek to disrupt traditional insurance and because of that, it is important that they can speak with one voice and without conflict in the industry.
“InsurTech UK will seek to positively present Insurtech businesses to consumers and will interact with the Government and regulatory entities to push for positive change and improved consumer outcomes. It is therefore incredibly important that we engage with and positively influence Insurtech UK as our goals are completely aligned and we can both benefit from mutual support.”
Companies who have joined or have begun the process to join InsurtechUK include: Anorak, Azur, Bewica, Bikmo, Bought By Many, Buzzmove, Canopy, Claim Technology, Concirrus, CoVi Analytics, Drover, Equipseme, Floodflash, Hokodo, honcho, Kasko, Konsileo, Laka, Marmalade, Meet Sherpa, Urban Jungle, Pluto, Polaris, PolicyCastle, Shepherd, So-sure, Tapoly, Track My Risks, Worry and Peace, Wrisk, Yulife.