AI Startup Cytora Raises $32.5M to Expand Commercial Insurance Products, Geographies

Insurance Journal | April 22, 2019

Cytora, the London-based provider of artificial intelligence-powered solutions for the commercial insurance industry, announced it has raised £25 million ($32.5 million) in new financing, which will be used to accelerate expansion of the company’s product suite as well as its entry into new geographies. The Series B funding round was led by the EQT Ventures fund. Other participants included existing investors Cambridge Innovation Capital, Parkwalk, and a number of angel investors. Existing investors include QBE Ventures and Starr Global Holding, which participated in a 2017 funding round. “With this investment, we’re looking forward to widening our impact and helping accelerate the insurance industry’s digital transformation,” said Richard Hartley, co-founder and CEO at Cytora. “Today, we’re enabling insurers to underwrite at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods and price policies more accurately. Over the next 24 months, we’re going to scale across the insurance value chain and move into new geographies.” Cytora was founded and spun out of the University of Cambridge in 2014 by a team of machine learning scientists, data engineers and strategists. The founding team recognized that applying for commercial insurance is an arduous process that can take weeks because of the use of non-transparent pricing and outdated models, said Cytora in a statement.

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INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. Acquires Colorado-based Ryan Insurance Strategy Consultants

Arthur J. Gallagher | April 26, 2022

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. today announced the acquisition of Greenwood Village, Colorado-based Ryan Insurance Strategy Consultants. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 1990, Ryan Insurance Strategy Consultants assists financial advisors with insurance recommendations for their clients. With its research focused on life, disability and long-term care insurance planning, the Ryan team performs due diligence on new and existing insurance plans prior to recommending any insurance solution. Ryan also helps administer association group insurance benefit programs that insure thousands of financial advisors for their own personal insurance needs. John Ryan and his associates will continue operating from their current location under the direction of Kevin Garvin, head of Affinity North America for Gallagher's retail property/casualty brokerage operations. Ryan's strong relationships with leading financial planning associations will help us deepen and expand our existing footprint in professional lines programs into new and growing segments, I am excited to welcome John and his colleagues to Gallagher." J. Patrick Gallagher, Jr., Chairman, President and CEO. Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. (NYSE: AJG), a global insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting services firm, is headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. The company has operations in 68 countries and offers client service capabilities in more than 150 countries around the world through a network of correspondent brokers and consultants.

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Conning--Small Business Insurers Weather the Pandemic Storm

Conning, Inc. | December 29, 2021

The small commercial insurance market is riding out the COVID-19 pandemic in a determined manner positing approximately 4.2% compound growth between 2017-2020, according to a new study by Conning. Additionally, the market continues to be attractive for insurers on the national, regional, and specialty levels. The sheer number of firms and multiple dimensions to split the market—including revenue, industry, and employee count—mean almost all insurers can find at least one niche to participate in. "The impact of the recession on the small business community was severe, and small business tends to be overrepresented in the hardest–hit sectors of the economy, such as retail, hospitality, and food services, Our analysis of the market, however, shows much more favorable results than might have been anticipated, with strong support from the Treasury during the depths of the crisis and a sharp rebound in the small business segment in the second half of 2020 that was stronger than for either the midsized or large segments." -Alan Walters, a Vice President, Insurance Research at Conning. The Conning study, "Small Commercial Insurance: Weathering the Pandemic Storm," analyzes the small commercial insurance marketplace, including insurer market share, key insured segment trends, insurer responses to the pandemic, and evolving go-to-market strategies. As in prior editions of the study, quantitative market analysis of statutory data coupled with in-depth-interviews of key market participants provide the foundation of the research. "The small commercial market remains a compelling segment due to the lack of a clear market leader, and the ongoing entrepreneurial spirit and competitive intensity of market participants, The pandemic served to accelerate innovation in this space, driving greater and faster adoption of technology for sales and service, while also continuing to focus on agents and brokers as the primary distribution channel for the segment." -Steve Webersen, Head of Insurance Research at Conning.

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INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

Combined Insurance Announces Grants to Support Military Service Members, Veterans, and Their Families

Combined Insurance | April 29, 2022

Combined Insurance, a Chubb company and a leading North American provider of supplemental insurance sold both directly to individuals and at the worksite, today announced charitable grants to two nonprofits focused on supporting military service members, veterans, and their families. The contributions are in keeping with the company's longstanding philanthropic efforts and its enduring commitment to giving back to those who have served the nation. The recipient organizations are: Luke's Wings, which provides for emergency travel by the families of ill and injured service members, veterans, and fallen officers during hospital recovery and rehabilitation. Fisher House Foundation, which builds comfort homes at military and VA medical centers so that family members can stay nearby - at no cost - while a loved one is in the hospital. The grants are part of Operation Veteran Giveback, a nationwide Combined sales competition in which the two highest-performing zone teams earn the honor of selecting a military- or veteran-related grant recipient. The first-place Northeast Zone team (with a market territory extending from Maine to New Jersey) selected Luke's Wings; the second-place South Zone team (encompassing markets from Texas to Kentucky) selected Fisher House Foundation. We appreciate Combined's continued support of our efforts on behalf of military, veteran, and police families during their most difficult times, It's our mission to reunite heroes with family members, so they can receive critical emotional support during recovery and rehabilitation." Fletcher Gill, Co-Founder and CEO of Luke's Wings. By supporting Fisher House, Combined is helping military and veteran family members avoid tremendous out-of-pocket costs for lodging while a service member is in the hospital, We believe that a family's love is good medicine, and our houses help bring loved ones together during critical months of treatment and recovery." Dave Coker, President of Fisher House Foundation. In addition to supporting military and veteran-focused nonprofit organizations, Combined is strongly committed to hiring military veterans. The company established its military recruiting program in 2010, and has hired more than 5,500 veterans, military spouses, and their family members since then. This year's Operation Veteran Giveback program is of special meaning to us at Combined as we celebrate our 100th anniversary this year and honor our company's philanthropic traditions, Each year, our sales teams are proud to compete for the chance to give back to those who have made great sacrifices for the country." Mat Matarrese, Senior Vice President, U.S. Agency at Combined Insurance. About Combined Insurance Combined Insurance Company of America is a Chubb company and a leading provider of supplemental accident, health, disability, and life insurance products in the U.S.* and Canada. Headquartered in Chicago with a tradition of 100 years of success, we are committed to making the world of supplemental insurance easy to understand. The company has an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau and an A + (Superior) financial strength rating by A.M. Best. We are ranked by VIQTORY as the number one Military Friendly® Employer in 2022 ($1-5 billion revenue category), marking Combined's eleventh consecutive year on the Top 10 list.

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CORE INSURANCE

InsureMyTrip Reports Travel Insurance Claims Increase, Delays Possible

InsureMyTrip | February 23, 2022

Travel insurance companies have reported a significant increase in travel insurance claims in recent weeks, according to licensed travel insurance agents at InsureMyTrip. With an upsurge in recent claims submissions, travelers should anticipate possible delays. "Many trips were affected by the Omicron surge and other factors, especially during December and January. Those travelers, who have coverage, are likely in the process of submitting claims to their insurance company. This high volume may lead to subsequent delays," - InsureMyTrip Travel Insurance Expert Meghan Walch. When filing a travel insurance claim, InsureMyTrip says travelers can help prevent additional lag time by understanding requirements in advance and supplying the proper paperwork to the travel insurance company: Specific forms may be required for each benefit within a policy. If documents are missing, this may cause a claim to be delayed. Use your travel insurance company's online portal to submit a claim or check the status of an existing claim. Obtain and save all receipts and documents related to an incident to help verify a claim. Once you return home from a trip, it can be more difficult to obtain documentation from travel suppliers or medical facilities. For travelers seeking additional help, InsureMyTrip travel insurance customers have access to Anytime Advocates, a claims assistance service. About InsureMyTrip It's simple. InsureMyTrip finds you the right travel insurance plan, every time. InsureMyTrip is the authority on travel insurance. We are committed to empowering travelers to make the best possible insurance decisions by leveraging our technology, data intelligence, and expertise. InsureMyTrip is rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau.

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