Howden unveils insurance innovation hub

Howden unveils insurance innovation hub

Howden unveils insurance innovation hub | Insurance Business New Zealand

Insurance News

Howden unveils insurance innovation hub

It has also earmarked new funding for the insurtech sector

Insurance News

By
Kenneth Araullo

Howden has announced the official launch of Howden Ventures, a new arm that aims to establish an investment and risk incubator that expedites the development of insurance products.

Currently pending approval from Lloyd’s, Howden Ventures was launched with a designated underwriting capacity of £500 million. It will tap into the expertise and resources from specialised innovation teams across the global insurance market.

The platform will also introduce a pioneering delegated underwriting authority, supported by notable Lloyd’s underwriters such as Tokio Marine Kiln, Chaucer, and Liberty Specialty Markets, providing a syndicated underwriting capacity to facilitate the creation of innovative insurance solutions.

In light of the recent decrease in funding for the global insurtech sector following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank, Howden Ventures has also initially earmarked £10 million of new funding for the sector. The plan is to support at least five new startups over the next two years.

By consolidating funding, underwriting capital, expertise, governance, and distribution in one place for the first time, Howden Ventures aims to establish an end-to-end platform and commercial solution that expedites new product development and drives insurance innovation.

The focus of this initiative will be on advancing solutions for emerging and evolving risks in a rapidly changing and interconnected world. These risks are propelled by various factors including a changing climate, disruptive technology, macro-economic uncertainty, shifting demographics, and geopolitical pressures.

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Leading the collaborative industry initiative is insurance innovation expert Tom Hoad.

“Innovation is all about working together and, for the first time, Howden Ventures will assemble the most innovative thinkers in the insurance ecosystem to help solve some of the world’s most critical risks.,” Hoad said.

“Combining the managing general agent (MGA) model with insurtech innovation provides the ideal platform to foster collaboration, and to merge external talent, fresh thinking, new technology, funding, and underwriting capacity. By doing so Howden Ventures is aligning interests from all corners of the market to create an economic model that will help the insurance industry invest in the type of long-term, innovative solutions that clients are looking for,” he said.

Investment in maritime solutions

In addition to its introduction, Howden Ventures has also finalised its first investment in CetoAI, a maritime technology company integrating data analytics, engineering excellence, and artificial intelligence to manage machinery breakdown risk in global shipping through predictive maintenance.

With Howden’s investment, CetoAI’s suite of solutions will empower ship owners, operators, and insurers to utilise live data to decrease machinery breakdowns, boost vessel utilisation rates, comprehend operational risk in greater detail, and reduce performance-related emissions, thereby aiding the transition to a low carbon economy.

“Our investment in CetoAI is the perfect example of the power of insurance to drive market innovation and the development of new products that address climate risk and resilience. With Howden’s support, CetoAI can draw upon the best minds and expertise that the specialty insurance market has to offer as it solves some of the greatest challenges facing the maritime industry,” Howden global head of marine Daniel Whiteside said.

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