Ted Stuckey is the Managing Director of QBE Ventures, outlines how QBE works and shares with us his thoughts on the future of insurance.
Hi Ted, can you explain the specific model of open innovation of QBE Ventures? What kind of partnership do you establish with start-ups?
QBE Ventures acts as a front door for start-ups to have access to QBE. We’re partnering with start-ups that provide QBE with access to technologies, products or capabilities that allow us to accelerate our strategic goals and objectives. As a strategic corporate venture capital fund, we work to deploy start-ups product and capabilities across our Global divisions. It is important that both parties see the investment as a mutually beneficial partnership. We want to provide unique resources that go beyond the capital we are putting into the company to help fuel the start-ups’ growth and development.
What kind of startups do you look for? Can you describe your scouting process?
We want to engage with start-ups across all sectors, ranging from back-office automation to new products, new markets and new means for client acquisition. We’re looking for start-ups with strong founding teams that have demonstrated domain experience and a proven ability to deliver. As far as the types of businesses we’re looking to work with – it falls across the spectrum of property and casualty insurance.
QBE Ventures invests in, and partners with, startups globally. We’re active in the startup ecosystem both directly and via partners like Techstars. This allows us with access to startups at all stages and provides us with a unique insight into new trends and opportunities. An example of an investment that we’ve made is with Cytora and a partnership that we’ve recently announced with Nimbla. Startups can always contact us at https://www.qbe.com/ventures.
You have operations also in Europe, maybe also in Italy. Can you tell us more about this?
We’re always looking for amazing start-ups wherever we operate, that includes Continental Europe. That means providing our European operations with start-up partnerships that are mutually beneficial and allow them to accelerate their specific country goals and strategies. In some cases that might be growing or developing new, innovative products. In Europe, QBE has offices in eight countries, including Italy.
Insurtech global scenario: which technology trends we will see booming in 2020?
We continue to be incredibly bullish on the impact of the intersection of artificial intelligence and new and non-traditional data sources. We’re excited about the impact that the intersection can have on the development of new and exciting insurance products and the streamlining of existing insurance processes. Ultimately, these technologies coming together will create a better customer experience and more customised set of products. By harnessing this with the help of these start-ups, it will also allow us to be more competitive in the geographies we operate in.
More generally, how do you see the future of insurance?
I’m a firm believer that the rapid increase in the number of start-ups that are operating in the insurtech ecosystem will push the industry to heights that we’ve never seen before. It will make us a better industry and a more efficient industry, it’s challenging us to think differently about the value we provide to our customers which is good for everyone and It’s opening our eyes to new opportunities that maybe we wouldn’t have been able to find on our own.