August 06, 2015
With so much of the attention in insurance industry technology investment being paid to the lack thereof by traditional insurers, it seems only appropriate to spend some time covering what those “disruptors” are up to on the other side of the investment front. An example of this came recently with news that AXA Strategic Ventures (ASV), has invested in startup mobile insurance technology provider, Limelight Health. This is one to keep an eye on as Limelight provides a mobile, cloud-based solution designed to simplify employee health benefits information and streamline the proposal, decision and renewal process.
The reason this one bears watching lies in the nature of the solution. Launched in January of this year, Limelight’s first product, QuotePad, as the name suggests uses tablets as its endpoints. It is a mobile, real-time platform architected to give mobile brokers, carrier representatives and underwriters the ability to respond rapidly to customer quote requests, compare employee benefits information and model interactive health plan cost scenarios with real-time market data.
The benefits here are not just on creating compelling customer experiences but also on cutting operational expenses that have typically involved manual, redundant, paper-intensive sales and administrative work. Indeed, this is as much a business process automation play as it is a customer experience one.
“We are excited about the partnership with Limelight because they share our vision for serving the growing SME market in the U.S.,” said Manish Agarwal, General Partner of AXA Strategic Ventures. “The market requires personalized and compelling benefits solutions, which is an important focus of new product development for AXA. The changing insurance landscape highlights the need for transparency and simplicity in the business process. Limelight Health’s technology is setting a new precedent for enterprise level efficiency.”
“The shift happening in the insurance and benefits industry is still in its early stages and the opportunity is tremendous to redefine how enterprise organizations approach benefits and interact with their customers,” said Jason T. Andrew, CEO and co-founder, Limelight Health. “AXA has an innovative approach in the market and we are eager to collaborate with them to move our business forward significantly.”
Limelight Health to date has raised $3.7 million in venture capital from Mass Mutual, AXA Strategic Ventures, Launchpad Digital Health, and other investors. It says it intends to use the capital to grow its sales and engineering teams, enhance its cloud-based SaaS (News – Alert) technology platform, and expand its U.S. distribution nationally.
As has been highlighted in the last several months, there is no aspect of insurance that is not ripe for transformation by investment in new technologies. Opportunities abound for solutions and companies that enable operational effectiveness and efficiency as tools for creating competitive advantage and profitability. The twin goal is to give potential customers reasons to engage and current customers reasons to remain loyal and satisfied, become candidates for upselling, and maybe even brand advocates instead of critics. Empowering insurance representatives wherever they are to have the right tools to be responsive by leveraging the power of the cloud and mobility obviously just makes good business sense.