Bitesize InsurTech: DQPro
July 9, 2021 James Tribe
The DQPro platform allows specialty insurers to monitor their data and ensure that data quality is sufficient for consumption. By configuring their own checks and rules, clients can ensure that data is within acceptable underwriting parameters, meets regulatory compliance standards, and is fit for purpose across a wide range of niche needs and requirements.
DQPro was founded in 2016, off the back of a partnership with Brit Insurance to build the initial product. The team had already worked in insurance for over a decade as a data warehousing services and consulting business. This allowed them to ‘bootstrap’ the creation of DQPro, which remains privately funded despite interest from investors.
Data assurance in insurance is currently a landscape dominated by in-house, DIY data assurance and data quality solutions that were generally built for use by specific teams (especially by tech teams only) or for specific problems. DQPro aims to improve on these processes in two major ways. First, by monitoring data at the earliest point of entry and notifying users, it allows users to head off data quality issues before they reach IT and technical teams. These teams would ordinarily have to spend a lot of time trying to fix upstream errors, or simply accept them and live with them. Secondly, DQPro also operates as a business workflow platform, utilising slick user experience (UX), configurable email notifications and visually appealing reporting to engage management with data quality issues, and ensure these issues are actually addressed.
Markel: The DQPro system helped Markel, a specialty commercial insurance provider, to standardise multiple checks across actuarial, finance, exposure monitoring, claims and governance teams. This had benefits for reporting and visibility – such as reducing prep time for data audits from three weeks to thirty minutes – as well as enabling niche checks at the point of risk entry that were previously impossible, such as Underwriters writing “within their limit” and identifying signs of financial fraud from broker commissions. The transformation unified a previously disparate system of checks spread across the different teams.
Aegis: DQPro allows users to assign their own rules and checks to often esoteric specialty data. Aegis run a wide range of checks across their data and create follow-on actions to address issues. For example, DQPro allows them to monitor EPIs (expected premium income) across bordereaux and identify variance from the actual premium received. Where there is variance, this can lead into a conversation with the broker.
DQPro is currently used by customers in 12 countries who perform more than 300,000 checks in total per month. The team are looking to continue expanding their presence outside of Lloyd’s, where they have a 35% share of the market, and into Europe and the US. They are also building out specific functionality for reinsurers and MGAs.
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The Oxbow Partners View
We see two major competitive advantages for DQPro. Firstly, as a bootstrapped company DQPro has been revenue generating from day one. This is a major advantage in the insurance technology market, which is dominated by long sales cycles and intensely competitive pitches. Unlike venture-backed companies, DQPro does not face looming exit horizons that could lead to unsustainable growth or client acquisition strategies. This is an ideal way to penetrate a market where many ‘unglamorous’ tech challenges are still unsolved.
Secondly, DQPro’s business-user focussed UX and notifications features could be a key differentiator. We have seen many InsurTechs that struggle to clearly elucidate their value beyond the obvious time-saving benefits. This is because the real costs of the problems they solve are often hidden from business users – even if they are occasionally painfully clear to tech users. Acknowledging the business-IT divide, and explicitly targeting business users to make problems visible before they reach IT, is a great way to improve sales prospects as well as benefit the client. In other words, seamless UX isn’t merely a gloss on the ‘core value’; rather, it can actually enhance it when it brings the value of change into the open.
More broadly, it is interesting to reflect that the rising tide of InsurTech investment has caused ‘big’ problems, worth £100s of millions to solve, in the front lines. These are the solution providers who could become unicorns and generate the enormous returns that are chased by VCs. Yet there is a disconnect between this investment in ‘disruptive’ challengers and the multitude of smaller problems that many insiders consider so insurance-niche that they demand prior experience in the space. Solutions like DQPro’s, which began life as a small startup partnered with a big incumbent, may thrive under the radar.
Find out more about DQPro on Magellan™