Which technology will greatly impact the insurance business? Within the companies, all of us are asking and many are trying to reply, someone believing to have found the answer in marketing. To be honest, the question is misleading and any answer is forced to be inaccurate or at least temporary, since the business, insurance like so many others, will be disrupted by all the digital technologies, in subsequent waves. Much better, then, to change the question. What is the most correct approach to deal with the impact of technologies on business?
This is the watershed moment: 5G is just around the corner and is going to speed up the Internet of Things. A Bain report claims that the market will reach a global value of $520 billion in 2021, more than doubling the $235 billion in 2017. Artificial Intelligence progress is expected to dramatically change customer relationships, starting with the new voice channel no longer passing exclusively through smartphones but rather involving new assistants becoming as smart as possible and increasingly available at home. According to Gartner, 72% of customer interactions by 2022 are expected to take place through emerging technology. The development and spread of connected vehicles first, and of driverless ones later, open up room for hitherto inconceivable services and lead to a new dimension of mobility, mainly in urban areas, and thanks to the increase in electric vehicles, an ever more significant boost will be provided by municipalities, regions and companies.
Against this backdrop, the need for, and thus the demand for, security and prevention are increasing. Risk protection is the long-standing business of insurance companies facing an opportunity that can become, as often happens, a threat if the actions required to seize it are not taken in the best possible way. Facing digital disruption, the priority is to speed up innovation processes by welcoming startup suggestions and ideas. As BNP Paribas Cardif has been consistently doing for years with the Open-F@B project, now in its fifth edition: the 2018 call, launched through InsuranceUp, is open until October 22nd.
For 5 years now, the company has been selecting startups, meeting them and starting collaborative projects that in some cases have turned into new products in its portfolio. This has enriched its culture of innovation for new digital companies, as indirectly revealed by the 2018 edition topic, Positive Social Impact, consistent with the guidelines of the strategic plan of the BNP Paribas Group. The single technology, the application solution and the business model no longer matter. The most important aspect is the impact that innovation can (and must) have on the community.
Not only is it a matter of social responsibility, not to mention social innovation, but rather a new all-inclusive approach to innovation where people and not technologies are the benchmark. Quite a challenge for the company, but also for the startups and innovators.
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