The man who started the online insurance exchange MarketScout in 2000 is on the lookout for innovators and innovations in the insurance industry. Richard Kerr recently hosted more than 400 insurance entrepreneurs and innovative thinkers at the MarketScout Entrepreneurial Insurance Symposium in Dallas. Among the highlights was Kerr’s announcement of the finalists in his Insurance Innovation Alliance’s first annual Entrepreneurial Insurance Awards.
“Over the course of the last four years, since we’ve been doing this symposium, there have been a lot of opportunities that have originated here. New companies have been launched, new concepts and ideas,” Kerr told Insurance Journal in a recent video interview at the Dallas symposium.
“So what we want to do is recognize some of the great ideas that are out on the street, not necessarily having anything to do with this symposium or with us. So we came out with the Entrepreneurial Insurance Awards.”
Participants in the Entrepreneurial Insurance Awards competition include admitted insurance companies, excess and surplus lines companies, retail agents, brokers, service providers, technology firms, software developers, as well as individuals. Three categories have been targeted: underwriting, distribution and technology.
According to Kerr, the finalists were selected from more than 100 applicants by a panel that included business and technology experts from Microsoft, MarketScout and The National Alliance for Insurance Education and Research.
The 11 finalists are:
- Ace Insurance – for a new product to help mitigate water penetration and water claims in high net worth properties.
- Chartis Insurance – for Diamond Innovation, an executive training method the company uses to drive innovation throughout the company.
- Ironshore – for innovation in coverages, specifically in the health care professional liability area.
- Lexington Insurance – for its new portal called LexPlorations that provides in-depth information on market issues, emerging risks and innovative solutions.
- Marsh - for MarshConnect, its global client portal that gives clients access to their organization’s insurance and risk information, along with risk and insurance market intelligence, research tools and interactive utilities and gives carriers the opportunity to see what accounts are available to bid on.
- Wells Fargo- for its CyberSure portal, designed to streamline the administration of insurance programs.
- WAHVE (Work At Home Vintage Employees) – for its network that provides agencies and carriers with the opportunity to hire skilled insurance retirees who want to supplement their retirement income by working part-time from home.
- Allied World Assurance- for i-Bind, a quote, issue, and bind interactive tool for professional liability and E&O.
- The Combined Group – for its Quantum technology that provides agencies real time, SEMCI, multi-carrier access for small commercial lines products.
- FirstBest – for it application that converts existing ACORD applications into XML compatible formats, enabling quoting and binding and issuing policies in a single transmittal.
- RiskMetrics – for its concept of using geospatial mapping to provide market information, segmented by SIC class code and the insurers writing the coverage in selected geographic areas.
Three final winners of the Entrepreneurial Insurance Awards — one in each category of underwriting, distribution and technology– will be announced in December.
Editor’s Note: View Insurance Journal’s interview with Richard Kerr on the MarketScout Entrepreneurial Insurance Symposium and the Entrepreneurial Insurance Awards.