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Insurance technology investment in AI up 79%

Posted: 30 March 2017 | By Darcie Thompson-Fields

Artificial intelligence and the internet of things were the top trends in insurance technology last year according to analysis from Accenture.

The consultancy said that startups in this area were the most invested in last year. According to the report, deals across AI, automation and IoT increased 79% in 2016. Even though the two technologies represented only one-quarter of the 216 insurtech deals globally last year, they accounted for 44 per cent or $711 million of total insurtech investment, compared with just 10 per cent of global in 2015.

AI has the potential to transform the insurance industry, from the speed and accuracy with which it can complete risk assessment to the ability to assess risks in real-time. The industry also views AI and IoT as critical to delivering better levels of personalisation and real-world outcomes for customers.

“The rise in insurtech is further evidence of the growing role that new technologies are playing in shaping innovation across financial services.” Said Accenture Financial Services managing director, Julian Skan.

“The next challenge for insurtech startups is the same as what the more mature fintechs are now facing – being able to translate that investment into growth and customer acquisition.”

Insurtech’s shifting geographic focus maps closely to similar global trends across fintech the report found. China, and more broadly, Asia Pacific, are playing a more prominent role as investment destinations for fintech capital. In 2016 Asia Pacific as a region for the first time eclipsed North America, with fintech investments there more than doubling in 2016, to US$11.2 billion.

“We’ve seen a rapid acceleration of investment into and deal activity around intelligent automation and IoT start-ups over the last 12 months,” said Accenture’s Digital & Innovation lead, Roy Jubraj who co-authored the report.

“These technologies are primed to disrupt the industry in the years to come”

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