UK insurtech investment hits record high despite Brexit jitters

Source: Accenture

Investment in UK insurtech has surged to record levels in a sign of confidence in the UK as a global hub for insurance technology, according to Accenture analysis of CB Insights data.

• New figures show investment in UK insurance technology (insurtech) increased to £218m ($279m) in the first half of 2017, compared to £7.3m ($9.4 million) the year before. One big deal had a dramatic impact in the UK (Gryphon Insurance raising £180 million). Even without it, funding increased from £7.3m ($9.4 million) to £38.3m ($49 million) year-over-year, increasing by 422%. The rest of Europe combined raised $134m in the same period.

• Despite uncertainty following the UK’s vote to leave the European Union, the UK continues to set the pace in insurtech investment. London remains the undisputed centre for European insurtech investment with 30% of all deals in the continent taking place in the city. Germany and France also saw strong growth in insurtech investment during 2017, joining London in the top three centres for insurtech investment in Europe.

• All over Europe, insurtech financing picked up momentum with 33 deals recorded in the first half of 2017, up 33% year over year. Cloud Computing, the Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data technologies attracted the most investment into insurtech in Europe as a whole, with $268M being invested in 2017 in cloud technologies alone.

• Deal activity in the UK accelerated in 2017, with a quarter of all UK insurtech deals since 2010 made in the first half of this year. The number of deals jumped by 75% from the same point last year. With 30% of all deals recorded in Europe, London is the primary European hub, followed by Berlin and Paris (10% each), Stockholm (6%), Edinburgh (4%) and Zurich and Munich (3% each).

Commenting on the findings, Accenture’s Digital & Innovation Lead for Insurance, Roy Jubraj, said:

“2017 is looking like the year of UK insurtech, with a dramatic increase in investment and deals in the last 12 months. Europe overall is gathering momentum, with the UK topping the table and confirming its place as a global hub for insurtech. This year the UK witnessed one of the largest global insurtech deals, which is a strong sign for UK investment and something the UK will be mindful in preserving as we move towards a post-Brexit economy.

“Deals in cloud computing and the internet of things are particularly accelerating. The explosion of data made available by an increasingly connected world is bringing unprecedented change and allowing modern insurers to understand customers and create personalised, dynamic relationships with consumers. Investors can see the potential in this and are backing efforts to unlock the value of technologies. That is why we are seeing deals that range from an app for buying short-term car insurance to a connected home solution that complements home insurance policies.

“Most interestingly, we are seeing life insurance-related deals which hasn’t typically been poised for disruption before. Investors backing disruption in this space suggests life insurers are at a big turning point. The challenge remains on how these technologies can make a real impact for consumers, and for insurers who need to keep pace with a rapidly-changing world.” 

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