Marsh announces Assurance acquisition

Marsh | April 01, 2020

Insurance brokerage and risk advisory giant Marsh has today announced its acquisition of Assurance Holdings, Inc. a Schaumburg, Illinois-based independent insurance agency. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Assurance is a full-service brokerage providing business insurance, employee benefits, private client insurance, and retirement services to businesses and individuals across the United States. The firm, which was founded in 1961, was officially acquired by Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC (MMA), the US middle market agency subsidiary of Marsh. “In just over 10 years, MMA has grown into a leading $2 billion-revenue platform serving midsize businesses and individuals across the US,” said Marsh president and CEO John Doyle. “Assurance is another example of our continued ability to attract the highest quality teams to join MMA and enhance our ability to serve clients in this important segment.”

Spotlight

More than 40 years after penning such wonderful words, the illusion of “the cloud” has burst onto the technology scene and dominates headlines and industry discussions. Part of the illusion – or perhaps more appropriately, confusion – is the marketing hype. In article after article, the cloud is described as “transforming,” “disruptive,” “game-changing,” “a seismic paradigm shift” and “revolutionary.” Predictions of adoption and growth rates are reminiscent of the early dot-com era.

Spotlight

More than 40 years after penning such wonderful words, the illusion of “the cloud” has burst onto the technology scene and dominates headlines and industry discussions. Part of the illusion – or perhaps more appropriately, confusion – is the marketing hype. In article after article, the cloud is described as “transforming,” “disruptive,” “game-changing,” “a seismic paradigm shift” and “revolutionary.” Predictions of adoption and growth rates are reminiscent of the early dot-com era.

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Next Insurance Partners with Intuit QuickBooks to Simplify the Insurance Purchasing Process for Small Businesses.

Cision PR Newswire | October 22, 2020

Next Insurance, the fastest growing digital insurtech company transforming small business insurance and Intuit Inc.Today announced that they have teamed up to simplify the insurance purchasing process for millions of small businesses. This integration will enable QuickBooks users to seamlessly obtain a customized quote and easily purchase General Liability, Professional Liability and Workers' Compensation coverage from Next Insurance with a few clicks of a button, directly from their QuickBooks account. Next Insurance's simple, online application process allows QuickBooks subscribers to obtain tailored insurance coverage alongside their financial data, creating one cohesive experience.

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INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

Shift Technology Automates and Optimizes Decision Making Across the Policy Lifecycle

Shift Technology | January 28, 2021

Shift Technology, a supplier of AI-driven decision automation and optimization solutions for the global insurance industry, today declared availability of both new products and moves up to existing solutions inside the Shift Insurance Suite (Shift Technology Automates and Optimizes Decision Making Across the Policy Lifecycle). The Shift Insurance Suite is a bunch of cloud-based AI solutions which backing improved decision making by insurance representatives across divisions. Shift spearheaded the utilization of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to help insurers not just better spot possible fraud in the claims cycle yet in addition settle on more educated decisions about how best to react to these dubious claims. The capacity to rapidly decide whether a claim ought to be explored and assuming this is the case, recognize the ideal analytical methodology infuses huge productivity and exactness into the general claims measure. The organization based on its achievement in fraud detection to address the insurance industry's longing to eliminate grating from the claims cycle and advance toward low-contact, no-contact, and completely computerized claims settlement from first notice of loss (FNOL) through to payment. Today, Shift Claims Automation and Shift Claims Fraud Detection are the lead products in the Shift Insurance Suite. "AI is ideally suited to help insurance professionals make the best decisions possible in support of their customers and their business," stated Marcel Gordon, vice president, Product, Shift Technology. "The ability to ingest and organize massive amounts of structured and unstructured data, understand relationships and connections between individuals, and then do sophisticated analysis enables Shift to provide insurers with a new generation of tools. Shift is putting AI in the hands of operational teams at insurers around the globe." With the declaration of the Shift Insurance Suite, the organization is expanding on its accomplishment in fraud detection and claims automation with the presentation of new products focusing on extra cycles in claims and across the approach lifecycle. To help workers all the more rapidly and precisely recognize openings for subrogation, the organization is presently offering Shift Subrogation Detection. Outside of claims, Shift Underwriting Fraud Detection is intended to give basic data valuable in concluding whether to give insurance inclusion to an individual or business. The organization's new Financial Crime Detection product underpins against illegal tax avoidance, worker fraud detection, and other consistence activities. Shift's products are explicitly intended to incorporate with, and increase the value of, existing center claims management systems. "Insurance is a business of decisions, and making the optimal decision can drive incredible benefits," explained Eric Sibony, chief scientific officer and co-founder, Shift Technology. "Through our work with some of the leading insurance companies in the world we have been able to demonstrate the exceptional power of AI to both optimize and fully automate some of the most important insurance decisions, driving significant value for carriers and their policyholders." To address the decision optimization and automation necessities of the global insurance industry, Shift has assembled its solutions around a powerful AI decision engine that can break down numerous sorts of structured and unstructured data given by the insurer, the insured, and/or external third parties. This may incorporate claims data, including claims handlers' notes, photos and other checked pictures, and unique reports, to give some examples. Shift has reliably exhibited its solutions beat decides based just methodologies that can't coordinate the precision and productivity given by insurance-explicit AI. At press time, the organization has insurers at different phases of sending for every one of its decision automatization and optimization products. The Shift Insurance Suite is comprised of: Shift Claims Fraud Detection: This award-winning technology is in use by more than 80 of the world's leading insurance companies including CSAA Insurance Group and MS & AD Insurance Group to name only a few. On top of the proven capability to detect fraud using data and documents, new capabilities introduced with the launch of the Shift Insurance Suite put the power of Shift's rich insurance data model, with all of the insurer's data denoised, reconstructed and linked together, in the hands of investigators. There is expanded support for the use of images and documents in the detection of fraud, as well as visual exploration of data using a network graph and the ability to search and browse through the complete data model. Shift Claims Automation: Available in two deployment models - Digital Journey and Augmented Adjustment - this solution uses AI to automate the claims process from FNOL through to final settlement. Digital Journey empowers policyholders directly, delivering a self-service claims experience - FNOL, tracking and settlement - with AI decision-making built in. The claims experience is customized to each insurer to match their claims process, handling policies and branding. Augmented Adjustment integrates AI-supported decision making directly into the Claims Management System, decreasing turnaround time and optimizing claims handlers' time during the claims process. Through its application of advanced OCR technology, Shift Claims Automation is particularly focused on removing the need for manual document review throughout the claims process. Shift Subrogation Detection: This new addition to the Shift Insurance Suite uses AI to quickly and accurately discover opportunities to recover costs from third parties. The technology not only finds those claims for which subrogation is possible but also generates actionable cases supported by concrete evidence. Shift Subrogation Detection improves on manual and simple rules-based subrogation identification processes by focusing on coverage (reviewing every single claim), consistency (checking against known subrogation scenarios) and precision (leveraging internal and external data, from police reports to recall lists, using AI). The result includes reduced claim loss and improved deductible recovery, while freeing the claims team to focus on resolving claims. Shift Underwriting Fraud Detection: Designed to optimize decision making at the point of sale, Shift Underwriting Fraud Detection applies AI to the policy underwriting process to detect inaccurate or non-compliant policies. Actionable alerts help to minimize fraudulent policies, avoid undesired risks, and assign appropriate premiums. Shift Underwriting Fraud Detection leverages Shift's rich data model, sophisticated data analysis and deep insurance expertise to give the Underwriting team a complete view of the policy, policyholder and risk while highlighting anomalies. First Central has adopted Shift Underwriting Fraud Detection to support the carrier's auto line of business. Shift Financial Crime Detection: Insurance is a critical part of the financial system, resulting in significant scrutiny from regulators. Shift Financial Crime detection enables insurers to better understand the status of all participants in its ecosystem, including employees, to identify and investigate potential criminal behavior, including money laundering. Shift Financial Crime Detection addresses these challenges for insurers, who have little transaction data to rely upon, by making maximal use of internal and external data about all participants in the insurance process. Used together with Shift's fraud solutions, Shift Financial Crime Detection enables insurers to build an overall picture of - and response to - risk from bad actors across their business. About Shift Technology Shift Technology delivers the only AI-native decision automation and optimization solutions built specifically for the global insurance industry. Addressing several critical processes across the insurance policy lifecycle, the Shift Insurance Suite helps insurers achieve faster, more accurate claims and policy resolutions. Shift has analyzed billions of insurance transactions to date and was presented Frost & Sullivan's 2020 Global Claims Solutions for Insurance Market Leadership Award.

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CLAIMS

Core Specialty Completes Merger with Lancer Insurance Company

Core Specialty Insurance Holdings, Inc. | January 03, 2022

Core Specialty Insurance Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries ("Core Specialty" or the "Company") and Lancer Insurance Company ("Lancer"), both specialty property and casualty ("P&C") insurers, announced today the completion of the merger combining the companies in a stock and cash transaction, which was previously announced on April 16, 2021. Lancer brings Core Specialty over 35 years of specialty commercial auto expertise that extends the capabilities of Core Specialty's existing diversified range of specialty P&C insurance products. This combination joins two highly complementary businesses with a shared strategic vision to become the leading specialty P&C insurer. The companies previously partnered in January 2021 to launch a new excess transportation program. The post-merger Core Specialty will be a further diversified company with an attractive business profile, a clean balance sheet and over $1.1 billion in equity capital. This merger with Lancer marks Core Specialty's first merger or acquisition since the recapitalization of StarStone U.S. in November 2020. The combined Lancer and Core Specialty have approximately 600 total employees. Lancer, which has been a leading provider of premier specialty insurance solutions to businesses and commercial transportation companies across the U.S. for over 35 years, will retain its brand, management team and operating locations. Lancer and Core Specialty are working together to ensure all policyholders continue to receive industry-leading products and services, and to align the combined operations in the best interests of customers, agents, brokers, and employees. Core Specialty operates through a business unit philosophy that allows its Divisions local decision-making for underwriting, claims, and policy servicing with a high degree of autonomy and full accountability. Lancer shareholders received a combination of Core Specialty common shares, preferred shares and cash in the merger. The newly issued Core Specialty preferred shares will mandatorily convert into common shares upon a Core Specialty initial public offering or certain other specified events. In addition, Lancer's existing shareholders will retain the financial impact of development on Lancer's existing reserves for losses and loss adjustment expenses over a five-calendar year period within a specified symmetrical range. The transaction is expected to be accretive to Core Specialty's earnings per share and return on equity in 2022. Jeff Consolino will continue to lead the combined company as President and CEO and Ed Noonan will continue as Core Specialty Executive Chairman. Dave Delaney, Lancer's CEO, has joined the Board of Core Specialty and will work closely with Mr. Consolino and senior members of the Lancer and Core Specialty teams in the integration of the businesses. The Core Specialty Board of Directors will comprise the current Board with the addition of Mr. Delaney. Matthew Jenkins, Lancer's President & Chief Operating Officer, will serve as President of Core Specialty's Lancer Division. Dave Delaney, Co-Founder and CEO of Lancer, said, "All of us at Lancer are excited to join forces with Core Specialty. Core Specialty's management team is exceptional, and our friendship with Jeff Consolino, Ed Noonan and members of Core Specialty's Board goes back a very long way. I have no doubt Lancer and Core Specialty's combined operating and financial resources will create tremendous growth opportunities for our shareholders, employees, policyholders and distribution partners." "I have known Dave Delaney for over 30 years. He is an excellent specialty P&C insurance operator, and I am excited that he will be joining the Core Specialty Board. We have assembled a Board for Core Specialty comprised of company founders and business builders which we believe is second to none, and Dave's talents will add meaningfully to our Board. We are also pleased and honored that after decades of building Lancer as an independent, family-controlled enterprise that Dave and his co-shareholders have the confidence in Core Specialty's management, business plan and investors to exchange their Lancer equity for the opportunity to join their future prospects with ours," - Ed Noonan, Executive Chairman of Core Specialty. Core Specialty Update Since the June 30, 2020 agreement by Core Specialty to recapitalize StarStone U.S., the Company has grown from four business units to nine through: forming a new Excess & Surplus Property Division, establishing a Marine and Energy Division from the StarStone London managed business, separating and hiring new leadership for our Errors and Omissions Professional Liability and D&O Management Professional Liability Divisions, initiating an Agriculture Division and completing the Lancer merger. Core Specialty's gross premium written for the twelve-month period ended September 30, 2021 was $1.7 billion and pro forma for the Lancer merger would be $1.9 billion. About Core Specialty Core Specialty offers a diversified range of property and casualty insurance products for small to midsized businesses. From its underwriting offices spanning the U.S., the Company focuses on niche markets, local distribution, and superior underwriting knowledge; offering traditional as well as innovative insurance solutions to meet the needs of its customers and brokers. Core Specialty is an insurance holding company operating through StarStone Specialty Insurance Company, a U.S. excess and surplus lines insurer, and StarStone National Insurance Company, a U.S. admitted markets insurer. About Lancer Insurance Company Lancer Insurance Company has been a leading provider of premier specialty insurance solutions to businesses and commercial transportation companies across the U.S. for over 35 years, leveraging a network of over 2,000 broker relationships. Lancer specializes in auto liability, physical damage, cargo and general liability coverages. Lancer has consistently received an A- (Excellent) rating for financial strength and stability by AM Best, one of the most recognized rating systems in the insurance industry.

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