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'Open banking' data exchange launched for commercial insurance

The hub has been developed to tackle 'key client and industry pain points', with the aim of providing buyers a 'faster, more efficient and convenient renewal experience', its founders say

New Big Ticket digital data platform seeks to streamline renewal process and could generate annual operational cost savings of $25bn 

A new digital hub for the global commercial insurance industry has launched, which it is claimed could save the insurance industry as much $25bn.

Likened to the “open banking” model, Big Ticket enables buyers to share their exposure data with every participant in the insurance value system and with a full audit trail, allowing digital exchange and collaboration to take place in a secure environment.

Unveiled at the Airmic conference, the hub has been developed to tackle “key client and industry pain points”, with the aim of providing buyers a “faster, more efficient and convenient renewal experience”, its founders said.

It is also hoped the platform will increase the market’s understanding of risk through better data sharing, as well as drive innovation and increase preparedness for emerging systemic risks.

The platform, which has been four years in development, is backed by Airmic, founding partner MasterCard and advisory board members Aon, Aviva, Oasis, Zurich, Pool Re and Motive Partners. Financial backing is provided by technology venture capital investors including Fin Capital.

The first category of cover to go live on the system is property insurance for large corporates.

“Commercial insurance is a laggard in financial services when it comes to digital innovation, especially in comparison to banking and payments platforms such as Swift and Plaid,” Robert Bartlett, co-founder and chief executive, Big Ticket, said.

“In banking, neutral digital infrastructure – combined with an ‘open banking’ model – has been the catalyst for industry-wide digital innovation. This is something the insurance industry has lacked – until now.”

Big Ticket enables insurance buyers to safely communicate with any broker or carrier using standardised data. It is designed initially to streamline renewals by modernising the process of exposure data collection and aims to deliver “clear operational improvements”.

Julia Graham, chief executive of Airmic and chair of the Big Ticket advisory board, said: “Every year at the start of every insurance renewal, hundreds of thousands of companies use an industry-imposed process to collect exposure data.

“They are asked to use unencrypted spreadsheets and email to do this; a painful, laborious and insecure process that takes up to nine months to complete at an annual recurring direct operational cost globally of $25bn, on top of which it actually increases vulnerability to data privacy and cyber security risks,” Graham added.

Big Ticket has been operational for over six months, with Specsavers placing cover on the platform as a proof-of-concept. In addition, Aviva is already using the platform operationally in the UK. More than 20 other prominent UK European and North American insurers and brokers are preparing their plans to follow.

Matt Washington, managing director, UK commercial lines underwriting and global corporate and specialty at Aviva, said the insurer had received “positive feedback” from clients who have used the platform.

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