ITC DIA Europe

Times of Unprecedented Uncertainty ask for Resilience

Written by Roger Peverelli and Reggy de Feniks - Founders The DIA Community on Apr 12, 2023

In recent decades, technology has given us more and more control over the way we live. Just think of something as ordinary as navigation systems – so we never have to get lost again. Or search engines that provide all information at our fingertips. The possibilities seemed endless. Literally even: Elon Musk was well on his way to colonizing Mars. But then, all of a sudden, we were stuck at home for two years. When we finally thought that was over; the war in Ukraine, energy crisis, inflation, recession, uncertainty with regard to job security, financial uncertainty, ever more storms and floods … And this is not likely to change soon. Exit paths are unclear and uncertain. The sense of control seems to be very far away.

Key consumer trend

This uncertainty is amplified by the ‘infodemic’ that is also taking place. Disinformation and misinformation occur on an unprecedented scale. Do you remember that when the virus first arrived, many people immediately started hoarding and stocking toilet paper? Because social media said this was produced in China and would therefore soon be unavailable… Looking back we laugh about it. But then again, think of all the conspiracy theories that were prevalent on social media, how the authority of scientists was put into question, and how disinformation is used to destabilise countries. It all adds to Unprecedented Uncertainty – in our view a key consumer trend.

Insurers play a more important role

It makes the role that insurers play even more important. All this uncertainty causes consumers to become more and more interested in protection.  And on top of that, making the right decisions in uncertain times is even more crucial. Especially because there is a growing number of unreliable information sources, it is paramount to be a trusted source of information that can provide guidance.

Lower valuations and less funding availability

But what is the impact on the insurtech community? At the peak of the pandemic, we researched ‘The Pulse of Insurtech’ together with our Knowledge Partner McKinsey & Company.

What we found back then, were optimistic expectations for the future in terms of more demand and increasing impact. This is basically because of incumbents that retool themselves at scale; many leverage the capabilities and innovations of insurtechs, which is still an ongoing case.

But already back then, in particular investors, expected lower valuations and less funding to be available, especially for smaller companies. Needless to say, it turned out the investors were right.

New times, new strategies

With ongoing geopolitical and economic unrest, we must conclude that Unprecedented Uncertainty is not only a consumer trend. Unprecedented Uncertainty also sets the stage for the strategies of insurtechs in the years to come. Strategies such as: Moving from growth to profitability and extending the runway, expanding their scope to bigger ideas for bigger markets, finding ways to scale faster, facilitating working with incumbents who prefer more mature suppliers and, sometimes making use of the opportunities that arise from this crisis, with competitors which can be acquired at a fraction of what that would have cost a year ago.

Resilience

The overarching theme of all these strategies? Resilience.

But of course, resilience isn’t limited to the market strategies of insurtechs. It is also an ever more essential requirement and starting point for the organisation, the team, the leadership and for the entrepreneur as a person.

‘Times of Unprecedented Uncertainty ask for Resilience’ is therefore a theme that will be highlighted in several sessions at ITC DIA Europe (Barcelona, 28-29 June) – in all its facets, from various perspectives.

Several executive board members of insurance carriers will discuss the impact of Unprecedented Uncertainty on their strategies, their products and services and how they engage with their customers.

Investors from VCs and CVCs such as Aquiline, FinTLV Venture Capital, astorya.vc, QBE Ventures, AllianzX, Portage Ventures, AXA Venture Partners, Munich Re Ventures and UNIQA Ventures will share on stage how they work with their portfolio companies to become more resilient.

Last but not least, Steven Mendel, the founder and CEO of unicorn ManyPets, will share what resilience means for him personally, how this reflects in his way of working with his team, and in how the company operates to remain successful.

Amsterdam 12-13 June

ITC DIA EUROPE

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