Northwest residents’ concern about wildfires on the rise - PEMCO

Insurance Business America | May 03, 2019

Northwest residents’ concern about wildfires on the rise - PEMCO
As the Northwest prepares for an above-normal risk of wildfires this year, residents of Washington state are five times more likely to believe that they’ll be directly impacted by wildfires than they were four years ago, according to a study from PEMCO Insurance. In 2015, just 5% of Washington residents thought it was extremely likely that a wildfire would directly affect them, according to PEMCO. Today, that number is 25%. Oregon residents, meanwhile, are three times more likely to believe that a wildfire will directly impact them. This isn’t mere paranoia, according to PEMCO – a number of independent studies have found that wildfire risk is increasing over time. “The Northwest is facing a new reality, and our poll confirms that people are increasingly concerned about the real threat of wildfire – whether it’s because they live in an area where wildfire can cause property damage or injury, or even simply because of the smoky haze that now descends on western areas of our region during wildfire season,” said PEMCO spokesperson Derek Wing.

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Finding affordable health insurance can be complicated at times. Remember that it is important that you get a health plan that not only meets your health care needs but one that is also affordable. Whether you are unemployed, self-employed, or covered by an employer’s health-care insurance plan, buying affordable health insurance is both time-consuming and it can also be a frustrating process. This infographic below shows you how to find and enroll in an affordable health insurance plan for you or your family.

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US National Flood Services to drive innovation and modernization into the flood insurance industry

National Flood Services | May 06, 2020

NFS has emerged with a technology platform called Trident that enables end-to-end quoting, applications, policy management, and claims. NFS launched Trident, which presents a stark contrast to how flood insurance has traditionally been quoted, sold and managed. NFS has also aimed to make understanding the flood insurance industry easier for agents and policyholders to navigate by supplementing the new application process. The flood insurance market has historically lagged behind other lines of business when it comes to customer simplicity, agent experience, and innovation. There has been limited progress in terms of operations and workflows within companies, the way in which agents are educated, and how the product is sold. However, one flood solutions provider that boasts a 35-year history and deep expertise in this marketplace is driving innovation and modernization into the flood insurance industry. National Flood Services (NFS), the #1 provider of flood solutions in the US, has been on a journey over the past two years to reinvent the flood insurance business and transform access to the flood product for agents and customers. Following a major acquisition, NFS has emerged with a technology platform called Trident that enables end-to-end quoting, applications, policy management, and claims, in addition to a wealth of educational resources that serve agents and policyholders. The transformation of the company began when PEAK6 Investments acquired NFS from Aon in 2018. At that point, the flood insurance market had lacked some of the innovation seen in other fintech sectors, creating a tremendous opportunity and need to transform the customer experience in flood. As part of the company’s reinvention, NFS launched Trident, which presents a stark contrast to how flood insurance has traditionally been quoted, sold and managed. Within the application, the specific questions that property owners need to answer depend on the property and will vary between customers, making the process often challenging to understand for typical agents, especially if they’re not writing flood frequently. - Ralph Blust, CEO of NFS. NFS determined that the quoting, application and policy management process could be significantly simplified using technology to promote a more intuitive and responsive workflow based on the initial responses of an insured. Using Trident, 85% of property owners in the United States – those of the population that are eligible for the lower-risk PRP policy – will be guided through seven questions and provided an instant quote. The platform also integrates third-party data, historical analytics, and optical character recognition (OCR) as a means of simplifying data entry to shorten the process for agent and policyholder. Read More: AIG MADE HISTORY WITH THE LAUNCH OF LARGEST-EVER SYNDICATE AT LLOYD’S “We are solving the complexity of obtaining a quote by streamlining the process and guiding the agent and the policyholder on some of the more intricate application requirements,” said Blust. “As of today, Trident is delivering immediate quotes to two out of three risks, with our goal to be at 95% of all risks getting quoted with us on an immediate basis.” NFS has also aimed to make understanding the flood insurance industry easier for agents and policyholders to navigate by supplementing the new application process with modern training and education programs to build knowledge and expertise in flood. On the NFS website today, agents will find over 140 videos that range from one-minute to three-minutes in length and are designed to answer specific questions that an agent or consumer might have about flood insurance. Those include how to file a claim, how to buy insurance, and whether a homeowner needs insurance, alongside many other key topics. Agents can also find longer training webinars that dive deeper into flood-related subjects, such as deciphering various policy types, the different risks that cause flood and specific requirements within the application process. Another exciting feature on the NFS website is the library of documents available for agents to use when selling flood. “We’ve also given agents a digital library of promotional and marketing material that they can use in order to better solicit flood,” said Blust. “Most agents historically have been hesitant in quoting the flood product and our [mission] has been that if we educate the agent properly and make it easy for the agent to sell the product, more will do that.” Read More: GEICO AND PROGRESSIVE CONTINUE TO LEAD THE U.S. AUTO INSURANCE MARKET Since the acquisition of NFS by PEAK6, the flood solutions provider has become a technology and service provider, an advocate of flood insurance, and an education resource on the peril of flood. Being an expert across these services uniquely positions NFS because there’s no other enterprise that’s integrating all three solutions to the insurance community and to consumers. The education component aimed at agents has been especially successful. Over a six-month period, NFS ran an integrated digital program to 13,000 agents to increase knowledge and awareness of flood. Over that time, the agents that participated in the e-learning program saw a 20% increase in policy growth all over the country, beyond just areas where flood has traditionally been sold. Considering that structures in the US today are three times more likely to have a flood than a fire over the 30-year course of a mortgage, yet only 12% of all homes are insured today for flood, promoting flood insurance education has never been more important. This shows that if you train agents and create awareness of the exposures that are associated [with flood], the coverage options, and how to complete an application, which is a key denominator in our platform, you can help facilitate the government’s mission to cover every structure that’s exposed to flood, And that’s what we’re here to do, is to support that effort. - Ralph Blust, CEO of NFS. AboutNational Flood Services National Flood Services (NFS) is to make a difference in people’s lives by helping protect what’s important. As a leading flood insurance vendor, we service more than 2.4 million flood policies and $2 billion flood insurance premiums each year. We take pride in knowing that flood insurance provides a critical protection against the world’s most catastrophic and costly natural disasters and is essential to helping rebuild lives devastated by flood. Our 550 colleagues across the U.S. are passionate about building valued partnerships with the industry’s largest Write-Your-Own (WYO) carriers, educating insurance agents through the complexities of flood insurance, and providing innovative solutions to meet the changing needs of today’s property owners.

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INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

Encova Insurance Expands Relationship with Bold Penguin to Improve Distribution Capabilities

Encova Insurance, Bold Penguin | January 07, 2021

Bold Penguin, a rapidly growing insurance technology supplier, reports today that it has started revealing a digital commercial insurance solution as a team with Encova Insurance. Encova joins other territorial and public key insurance organizations to offer a quoting experience for entrepreneurs' approaches for its autonomous agents. As the small business space across the United States keeps on moving to digital, the requirement for precise, proficient admittance to commercial insurance has expanded. Small businesses and insurance agents the same profit by extended digital quoting capabilities that are controlled by Bold Penguin's technology. "Independent agents and businesses alike need a solution for quick, easy to use, accurate software when it comes to quoting small commercial opportunities. Encova has proven to be one of the more advanced organizations and we are happy to work together," said Marc DeLeonibus, Co-founder of Bold Penguin. "Our partnership with Encova is the latest example of how large insurance companies are being nimble and meeting their agency force in a more digital way." Encova and Bold Penguin declared their association in 2018. From that point forward, the two associations have been working intently on picking the correct enterprises, items, and key agents to move toward small commercial. The recently declared work smoothes out the rate, statement and tie measure and permits select Encova organizations to get to their items. "We're committed to creating the user experience our small business customers and our agents expect," Encova Executive Vice President, Commercial Lines and Life, Grady Campbell said. "Partnering with Bold Penguin allows us to execute this vision quickly and efficiently, allowing more small businesses to access the coverage they need to grow their businesses." Bold Penguin proceeds with its development by offering admittance to its Exchange to merchants, agents, insurtechs, and select key accomplices who work in taking care of small business insurance. Since the underlying dispatch of its foundation, Bold Penguin has helped handle in excess of 2 million statement begins. The organization has prepared applications across all significant lines of commercial inclusion, including overabundance and excess (E&S) and commercial auto by helping a developing rundown of dispersion and transporter accomplices. About Encova Insurance A super-regional carrier ranked in the top 20 mutual insurance companies in the United States, Encova includes more than 1,200 associates writing in 28 states and the District of Columbia, premiums in excess of $1 billion, a surplus in excess of $1.65 billion and assets in excess of $4.3 billion. The group markets insurance solutions through more than 2,000 independent agencies in the Midwest, Northeast and South. About Bold Penguin Bold Penguin is where technology enhances the human touch in commercial insurance. With a heavy focus on agents, Bold Penguin upgrades the user experience for businesses, creates an easy tool for agents, and offers a streamlined process of underwriting for carriers. Bold Penguin was founded in 2016 by a group of entrepreneurs who spent their early days working with Allstate, Nationwide and Progressive alongside regional carriers and established insurance agencies.

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ANNUITIES

Luma and Insurance Technologies Partner to Bring Annuities Solution

Luma Financial Technologies, Insurance Technologies | February 24, 2021

Luma Financial Technologies ("Luma"), a free, multi-issuer structured products and annuities platform, reported today that they have chosen Insurance Technologies, LLC, supplier of FireLight®, a multi-transporter start to finish insurance and retirement deals platform, as its most recent accomplice to bring their annuities solution, "Luma Annuities," to market. The Luma platform, which is sponsored by three of the world's biggest banks, was worked to improve on the structured item venture measure. After solidly setting up itself as the worldwide fintech market leader in the structured products space, Luma is currently presenting an unequaled annuities solution that gives improved customer worth and helps consultants in battling their customers retirement saving difficulties, which are being driven by increasing market unpredictability and a low interest rate climate. Luma Annuities is a turn-key annuity deals and lifecycle management solution that straightforwardly addresses the greatest difficulties confronting counselors selling annuities today. The solution works on all parts of getting the hang of, executing, arranging, and overseeing annuities for venture firms and guides, allowing them to unquestionably offer their customers a more extensive scope of income-generating products. “Our mission has always been to simplify product complexities and give advisors smart solutions that they can believe in,” said Jay Charles, Director of Annuities at Luma Financial Technologies. “By partnering with Insurance Technologies and leveraging the FireLight platform’s embedded API capabilities, we bring a seamless order entry experience to financial professionals around the world. It is through our scale that we’re able to provide advisors with this unmatched experience, allowing them to offer their clients a wider-range of solutions to potentially put them on a path to a more secure retirement.” The new solution offers best in class innovation modules that are worked by guides, for counselors. It was intended to offer top tier instructive substance just as highlight broad information across a merchant seller's whole annuity item rack so guides can look at rates, riders, and item includes. Additionally included are prescient investigation and transporter delineation includes that enable consultants to introduce the best, most secure item solutions to their customers. Independently, the solution additionally allows guides to track and screen the presentation of the products they sold through the Luma platform, just as products in their past book of business. By inserting the Insurance Technologies FireLight solution inside the Luma platform, clients get a durable deals insight, allowing them to oversee products and rules in one incorporated area. Since 1995, Insurance Technologies has been altering the insurance and financial services industry to enable financial experts and counsels to all the more likely serve their customers. Their solutions have for some time been executed inside industry-driving insurance transporters and wholesaler firms. “We’re extremely excited to partner with a company that is adding tremendous value to the annuity category at a time when Americans need guaranteed income options more than ever,” said Doug Massey, EVP of Sales and Relationship Management, Insurance Technologies. “The ability for Luma to utilize the FireLight sales platform to access e-application and illustration data demonstrates the power of FireLight to allow carriers to build product rules once and re-use anywhere, seamlessly offering products in various user interfaces and effective solutions such as Luma Annuities. The transparency, efficiency, objectivity, and easy-to-manage tools that Luma provides financial professionals are simply powerful. We look forward to working with them to enhance the annuity investment experience provided to their customers.” About Luma Financial Technologies Luma Financial Technologies is the creator of Luma, a fully customizable, independent, buy-side platform that helps financial teams more efficiently learn, create, order and manage market-linked investments such as structured products, structured annuities and more. Launched in 2011, Luma is one of the largest and longest-tenured structured product platforms in the U.S. market and is used by broker/dealer firms, RIA offices and private banks to automate and optimize the full process cycle for offering and transacting in market-linked investments. This includes education and certification; creation and pricing of custom structures; order entry; and post-trade actions. Luma is multi-issuer, multi-wholesaler and multi-product, thus providing teams with an extensive breadth of market-linked investments to best meet clients’ specific portfolio needs. About Insurance Technologies Insurance Technologies provides innovative sales and regulatory automation solutions to the insurance and financial services industries. Offering a suite of integrated sales solutions, from pre-sale functions to quoting and illustrations through e-application and e-delivery to post-sale services, Insurance Technologies provides carriers and distributors the sales capabilities and tools to create automated and cohesive sales experiences for their advisors and clients across all lines of insurance, retirement and investment products. The unique architecture and flexibility of its solutions deliver front and back-office configurability and usability to support multiple business strategies, encourage cross-channel growth and evolve with regulatory changes.

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