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article imageInsurance techology sees record investment

By Tim Sandle     Mar 20, 2018 in Business
A new report looks at data-driven global insurance technology trends and charts record investment from both financial investors and reinsurers in these emerging technologies.
The report comes from CBI Insights and Willis Towers Watson Securities (WTW Securities), which is a investment banking boutique focused on the insurance industry. The report is titled “Fintech Trends To Watch in 2018”.
The headlines from the report are that global fintech financing has hit a new record (at just under $17 billion) and, within this overall increase, Europe saw the biggest increase in funding. Interestingly, there was a slight decrease in overall U.S. based fintech investment, although this is a sign of investors focusing their investments in key areas rather than investing across the board. Despite this, the North American fintech market remains valued at $8 billion.
With the leading fintech unicorns, 25 of these are collectively valued at $76 billion. In 2017 there were 35 mega-rounds of fintech investment. 20 of these were in the U.S., 11 were in Asia and 4 in Europe. Mega-rounds are defined as investments in excess of $100 million.
The U.S. unicorns include Coinbase, which is a digital currency exchange headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company brokers exchanges of Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin with fiat currencies in around 32 countries, and bitcoin transactions and storage in 190 countries worldwide.
A different type of company is Kabbage, which is an online financial technology company based in Atlanta, Georgia. The company provides funding directly to small businesses and consumers through an automated lending platform. A third example is Zenefits, which offers cloud-based software as a service to companies for managing their human resources, with a particular focus on helping them with health insurance coverage.
A European unicorn example is U.K. based TransferWise. This start-up is a peer-to-peer money transfer service. The concept is to match transfers with other people and then have a small commission while using the inter-bank mid exchange rate, unlike traditional currency transfers where there are buy and sell rates and the broker takes the difference between the two.
With the Asian market, a representative fintech is PayTm. This company is an Indian e-payments and e-commerce brand based out of Delhi NCR, India. The company is a consumer brand of parent company One97 Communications. The name is an acronym for "Payment Through Mobile".
Going forwards, the report predicts that the largest growth will continue to be with European fintechs. More specially, in China the largest growth area will be with wealth management fintechs. However, the biggest disruptor in the space is set to be Amazon, which is building up to occupy part of the fintech space with new insurance products.
More about Insurance, insurtech, Money, Data gathering, fintech