At the recent Guidewire Connections 2022 conference in Las Vegas, the firm’s president discussed Amazon’s latest entry into the market

Back in 2018 there was talk of Amazon’s debut in insurance that didn’t bear fruit, but last month (19 October 2022) saw the e-commerce giant launch a home insurance store for select UK customers, with the aim of making it available for all UK customers by the year’s end.

In 2020, it was reported that Amazon intended to enter the motorcycle and car insurance markets.

Since then, it has also entered into various partnerships with insurers, insurtechs and brokers including Marsh, Superscript and Next Insurance

Speaking during a media briefing about Amazon’s relationship with the insurance sector at Guidewire’s October Connections 2022 conference in Las Vegas, John Mullen, Guidewire’s president and chief revenue officer, said: “The UK is already an aggregator market.

“We could look at Amazon as just another aggregator or as disruption in the market. It is something we should pay attention to.

“There’s going to be winners and losers in this market, now more than ever.”

Consumerisation here to stay

Mullen added: “Now insurance companies must pay attention to [Amazon’s] introduction to the market, [which] is conforming very closely to market conditions and imperatives that exist in the UK.

”One thing is for sure – the rate of change in distribution [for] consumerisation will increase time and time again.”

Mullen added that he believed the insurance sector “has such a distance left to travel in meeting consumer expectations” around the distribution of insurance.

However, he explained that money entering the insurance industry would not necessarily improve its “core processing problems” because these improvements could “take 10 to 12 years” to create a solution for while investors wanted returns on their capital.

Overall, Mullen said Amazon’s store was worth paying attention to as “consumerisation is here to stay and the pace [could] amplify every six months”.

Cloud migration

Mullen joined Guidewire as president and chief revenue officer in February with more than 25 years of experience in the industry.

He explained that his “one goal” was to innovate and solve core processing problems for the insurance sector through value-added content and product development. 

An important aspect of this innovation for Mullen was cloud migration and whether the insurance industry could optimise itself via a Software as a Service (SaaS) system. 

He explained that a widespread migration towards cloud infrastucture was ”the route of travel for the industry”.

Mullen said Guidewire was now focused on delivering cloud infrastructure to the insurance sector.

“We will get better at making that journey to the cloud more predictable, reliable, scalable and faster,” he said.