The firm has aspirations of expanding into other markets and wants to be a lifeline for brokers 

Digital risk appetite directory Insurercore has set its sights on the US and Irish insurance markets after the Covid-19 lockdown helped to bolster business on its platform.

The business has seen demand from Irish brokers on its platform increase during the pandemic, therefore it is currently in talks with a number of companies in Ireland to expand its offering.

Insurercore’s founder and managing director Peter Clarke told Insurance Times: “We know that the Irish market is going through a few capacity changes and [it] could do with better and easier access to capacity.

“I think the complications of the UK leaving Europe has left a lot of people not understanding where to go. We are looking to help the insurance market map that out, so any broker coming in from Europe knows exactly who they need to be talking to and which route to take.

“The longer-term game is to roll [Insurercore’s platform] out in the South East Asian markets and South American markets. This is to help the London market source opportunities from these territories in a way that is fast and efficient.”

For the year ahead, Clarke hopes to focus on expansion to the US, growing Insurercore’s network as well as bringing more business into the UK and London markets from external and regional sources.

This goal follows Insurercore partnering with US-based Lloyd’s approved placement platform, Relay in February to offer a hard market placement solution.

Speaking about the partnership with Relay, Clarke continued: “Bridging the gap between the US and the UK markets is a big step for us and the partnership [with Relay] allows us to act quite seamlessly.”

The two firms partnered to provide a comprehensive solution for wholesale brokers looking for capacity, as well as for the managing general agencies (MGAs) and managing general underwriters (MGUs) offering it. The partnership focuses on “reducing the noise” by matching insurance professionals to deals. 

One of the biggest problems Insurercore faced was finessing how to develop business from international territories – typically this requires a lot of people to be involved in the value chain.

Growth drives rebuild

Armed with new search data, Insurercore has rebuilt its platform. Clarke explained: “We have had a number of success stories, either people looking to find new agency to help place a risk or [asking for help] with a risk.

“Using the data that we have been collecting, we have been able to identify stress points in the market and certain trends.”

He said professional indemnity (PI) has been the trending search throughout the year.

“It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster. In March last year, we saw quite a big rise in people searching for schemes and facilities. Just as the lockdown really started to kick in, we saw a massive spike in courier [searches] with people starting to turn more to delivery services,” he added.

This allowed Insurercore to find courier insurance providers and bring them onto the platform.

There are currently 1,987 companies registered on Insurercore’s platform, 100 of which are product providers such as MGAs, insurers and wholesale brokers –  this includes AXA, Beazley, Hiscox and Tokio Marine.

Last year, the beta platform saw month-on-month growth of 35% and products on the platform increased from 70 to now stand at more than 650. It also saw over 400 platform logins from brokers per month, who were looking to place risk.

“This comes down to what the core of insurance is, which is helping markets connect around the risk and risk appetite,” Clarke said.

A lifeline for brokers

Referring to its partnership with Biba back in May 2019, which aimed to address the reduced product availability and cut capacity for brokers due to the hard market, Clarke said that during lockdown, brokers that relied on face-to-face interactions or conferences to answer capacity and risk enquiries have found it very difficult.

He said: “When stuck at home, there really was nowhere for them to turn. Biba was getting a lot of enquiries and then passing them to us. We were able to step in at the right time to help brokers in distress when there was nothing else out there.”

Coming out of lockdown, Clarke believes the main challenge for insurtechs will be finding time to liaise with insurers - many are currently time-poor due to an influx of Covid-19 and business interruption claims, for example, therefore propositions need to be instantly beneficial.

Starting life in Lloyd’s LabInsurercore was founded in 2015 with the aim of futureproofing the insurance market.