Oxbow Partners recently caught up with the team at Artificial, a Member of our 2019 Impact 25.
Artificial provides software to digitise the quote and bind process for commercial insurers. Their digital platform, ArtificialOS, can support the insurance value chain end-to-end and is completely modular, allowing clients to pick and choose from their suite of tools. They use data and machine learning to automate processes and have data scientists and machine learning experts in their team as well as actuaries. Clients include the likes of Aon, Axis and, since March 2020, Chaucer.
Since we last spoke to Artificial (May 2018), the team have developed several new tools for their platform, including:
Data capture & enrichment: This enables the capture of data from emails, email attachments, PDFs, Word documents, and Excel files such as claims bordereaux and helps reduce re-keying. Artificial also have an enrichment function which brings in third party data sets to augment this data. In one case they used data from Opta, a provider of sports statistics, for a client providing insurance to footballers.
Endorsements tool: Artificial already have a digital contract tool where stakeholders (clients, brokers, insurers) can negotiate digitally in real-time. This new tool allows for the quick, easy, and audited addition of out of sequence contract endorsements.
Scoring & triaging: Artificial have developed a machine learning engine that scores a customer based on their risk profile, and then triages a response based on this score. Low risk customers are automatically accepted, high risk customers are automatically rejected, with any in between referred to the underwriter for further analysis. An example of where they are doing this is for commercial property in the US in partnership with Pitney Bowes.
Artificial raised an additional £1.1m in October 2019 and have their sights set on raising Series A funding in 2020. This follows a £4.2m seed round in April and participation in Ping An’s Accelerator Programme in Shenzhen in late 2018.
THE OXBOW PARTNERS VIEW
Insurers are evolving the way that they think about policy administration systems. The traditional approach was to identify a ‘monolithic’ end-to-end system and to build all products onto this. However, many are now increasingly considering an ‘ecosystem’ approach (see our recent blog the rise of technology ecosystems for a full explanation). The benefit is that products can be built quickly, inexpensively, and more flexibly than before. Platforms such as Artificial Labs are designed with the ecosystem approach in mind.
This may be a particularly useful characteristic in insurers’ response to the Coronavirus. Many will need to quickly update products, question sets or underwriting rules and the limitations of existing policy administration approaches may be exposed. Others will want to create products quickly that respond to particular requirements, for example the challenges that SMEs are currently facing. Companies who provide this capability, which includes also Impact25 Members INSTANDA and KASKO, could see a ‘bounce’.