Global claims management firm Crawford & Co. has acquired a majority interest in WeGoLook, an online and mobile inspection firm that calls itself the “Uber of inspections.”
Crawford said it agreed to pay $36.1 million for an 85 percent stake in WeGoLook, which is based in Oklahoma.
Both company boards have approved the transaction, which they expect to close in January 2017.
WeGoLook provides on-demand field inspection and verification services. Its web and mobile platform enables more than 30,000 mobile workers known as “lookers” to collect and verify information using their smartphone cameras. They can perform same-day vehicle, heavy equipment and building inspections for insurance and lending firms, as well as provide notary services and verify auction items. The firm also handles custom tasks for businesses and consumers. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Its website claims it has 100 employees and 8,000 unique customers. WeGoLook recently began adding “lookers” in Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia.
The company was formed in 2009 by Robin Smith, current CEO, and friend Mark Claywood as a tasking service that connected eBay shoppers with local people who would go inspect the items they wanted to buy.
Harsha Agadi, president and CEO of Crawford & Co., said in the announcement that he sees tremendous potential combining WeGoLook’s technology with Crawford’s global reach and client relationships.
These “cost-effective services will allow Crawford to unlock the large, underserved market for high frequency claims, reduce claim handling fees and help guard against fraud,” he said.
Another on-demand claims service, called DropIn, allows a claims adjuster to dispatch a person with a smartphone —called a Droperator— to a location to take photos and live video of a loss situation.
This Los Angeles-based firm, which was founded in May 2015 by Louis Ziskin, who said has plans to expand the service by making drone operators available as well. DropIn currently claims to have a network of 64,000 independent contractor smartphone users called Droperators and more than 1,100 drone pilots worldwide, with 50 percent being former military veterans.
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