Insurance & Blockchain Proofs of Concept & Consortiums as of 2019
Before describing the technical aspects of blockchain, the purpose of this section is to give the reader a sense of what is happening in the blockchain space in insurance worldwide. References are made to the companies and the technical focus of the projects. In the Bootcamp itself, the participants will be led in a facilitated discussion of a selection of these projects, to include research on the Who (incl. consultants, business partners, and technologies), What, When, Where, Why, How, and How Much, when available. Quite often, a private, open and interactive Q&A on actual projects happening within the industry is the most effective method for understanding the technology and corresponding implications for the insurance industry. We will review the full list in the Bootcamp.
The Context of Blockchain Distributed Ledger Technologies
The transition to e-Commerce is perhaps the best point of reference for an insurance executive accessing a high-level understanding of this new technology. Beginning in earnest in the early 2000’s and continuing to the present, the shift from traditional paper-based processes is quite similar to the current shift to the blockchain using distributed ledger technologies, henceforth referred to categorically as DLT.
To recollect, the shift to e-Commerce featured a “dot.com bubble” where investors were funding a wide variety of start-up projects, including those which savvy business professionals could quickly ascertain had little-to-no financial viability. As expected, the bubble burst, a lot of resources were thereby wasted, and a correction ensued. As one insurance executive said post bubble, “Last year, it was ‘e’ everything. Now it’s ‘g’ everything – ‘g’ for GONE!”
In the subsequent years, as the tech normalized, business decision-makers and influencers came to understand the real business implications of e-Commerce. As a result, countless applications and software programs have been adapted or developed from scratch to tap the potential of the internet for the business of insurance – be it new products, acquisition, claims, and countless process improvements. Indeed, since 2014 or so, “InsurTech” has been one of the hottest sectors in private equity and venture capital funding.
Fast forward through the 2010’s and the Social Tech adoption cycle, where Social Networks, Social Media, Digital Marketing, Crowdsourcing, Rating Systems, Algorithms, Mobile, Wearable, IoT and Machine Learning have each sought to drive traffic to the e-Commerce portals and revenue engines. Along the way, in many cases, the insurance ecosystem has struggled to adequately leverage the promise of e-Commerce. Meanwhile, tech departments have been inundated with system integrations and maintenance, cyber security, new legal and regulatory requirements, competitive pressures, and financial constraints.
Now here we are, 20 years downstream from the start of the internet revolution and a new technology brings a whole new adoption cycle. However, DLT brings with it a dramatic change in information architecture, “Distributed” being the key differentiator. In the world of DLT, the game-changer is cryptography, a new way of handling data. The sharing of transactional information on the blockchain using cryptography means that databases can be distributed across multiple servers while retaining privacy. The use of private keys to programmatically release and access information by multiple parties involved in the transaction promises to simultaneously increase information accuracy and security, while reducing transaction friction and costs.
However, there is always risk. And where there is risk, there is the need for insurance. Therefore, new insurance products will be spawned, outdated products will be sunset, and a myriad of technological advances will ensue along the insurance sales and service continuum. As always, those that move and adapt quickly and precisely will have the best chance of winning.
- 3 Half-days, delivered in a Boardroom or Off-site, invitation-only leadership team
- Keynote educational content, plain language, including detailed insurance case studies, concluded by a well-documented, facilitated WIIFM enterprise application session
Morning Session: About Blockchain, DLT, and the Global Legal & Regulatory Scene
- What is Blockchain?
– Demystifying and Illuminating, Myth-busters, “What’s the real deal?”
- The current state of L&R across the insurance ecosystem?
– U.S., Off-shore, Asia, Europe
- Who are the players?
– Tech Consultants, Bespoke App Developers, Current OTS Applications
Afternoon Session: Innovators & Early Adopters in Insurance
- Insurance Case Studies, and a few non-insurance scenarios of relevance to insurance
– Who, What, When, Where, Why, How, and How Much, when available?
- Facilitated discussion of the internal implications
– Revenue potential, cost-saving potential, process improvements, cash flow
Morning Session #2: Applying the “Real Deal of Blockchain” to our business
- Possible New Product Development
- Implications for Existing Products
- Potential Internal Process Improvements & Prioritizations
- Common Roadblocks and Barriers
- Forming an internal, cross-functional team for directed study and strategy development