Insurtech Agency CoverWallet Offers Its API for Other Small Firms to Offer Insurance

June 27, 2018

Digital small business insurance agency CoverWallet, which is partly owned by insurers Zurich Insurance and Starr Companies, is expanding its distribution by letting other small businesses such as accountants and lenders offer its policies from leading carriers.

The company is launching what it says is the first API (Application Programming Interface) for commercial insurance that allows developers and businesses to integrate insurance services directly. The API’s three features allow businesses to give their customers the ability to obtain insurance quotes, buy policies and manage insurance documents including certificates through their own websites and apps.

The move by the small business agency echoes one made by Lemonade, the digital personal lines insurer, last year. Lemonade similarly offered its API to businesses interested in selling its home and renters insurance to customers.

CoverWallet envisions its offering having appeal to real estate companies, financial institutions, payroll service providers, lenders, accounting software providers and agency management systems.

CoverWallet did not immediately respond to questions about how it will choose the businesses it allows to use its API, whether the adopters of its API will be selling insurance, if they will be compensated, and if they have to be licensed.

After Lemonade made its API available, the insurer said it was taking measures to assure that adopters are not selling insurance and that they are not receiving commissions if they are unlicensed.

Coverages offered by the agency include general liability, workers’ compensation, business owners, commercial property, professional liability, cyber liability, product liability, liquor liability, umbrella, errors & omissions, employment practices, garage liability, inland marine, commercial auto, and directors and officers. They are targeted at various industries including construction, manufacturing, healthcare, real estate, retail, agriculture, finance, insurance education, consulting, professional services, sports, nonprofits, transportation, wholesale and technology.

CoverWallet’s carrier partners include Liberty Mutual, CNA, Starr, Chubb, Blackboard (AIG), Guard, Markel, Employers, Travelers, Progressive, Hiscox and Atlas.

“With our API, anyone can offer business insurance tools and policies so that users don’t need to navigate away from the site or app they are on for their insurance needs,” said Pablo Molina, chief technology officer at CoverWallet. “Opening our platform is an important step for CoverWallet, as we carry out our mission to help small businesses get insurance through a seamless, fast, and convenient user experience.”

The CoverWallet platform provides users with real-time quoting, underwriting, binding, billing, and servicing capabilities.

The Hanover Group was the first carrier to use the CoverWallet platform in the U.S., providing it to agents for its emerging micro-small commercial business. Zurich, which became a minority stakeholder in June, uses it to sell its policies directly to small businesses in Spain. Insurer CV Starr was an early investor and is also a minority shareholder in CoverWallet.

Since launching in 2016, CoverWallet has secured more than $30 million in venture capital funding. In addition to Zurich and Starr, CoverWallet has received funding from Union Square Ventures, Index Ventures, Two Sigma and Foundation Capital.

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