Corporate Startup Collaboration in Insurance - Unleashing the True Power of Insurtech

Major corporations around the world are increasingly waking up to the fact that startups are becoming the key source of innovation for them. There’s even a new acronym for it CSE (Corporate Startup Engagement). Call it what you may but its delivering a rapid iterative customer centric R&D to quite a few largest global players.

262 of the world’s 500 largest corporations are actively partnering with startup companies.” – INSEAD Report

There are clearly a set of complementary strengths that exists between corporate and startup entities. Rather than trying to fit a square peg of startup innovation into a round hole of corporate structure, corporate leaders are choosing to actively collaborate with startups to explore ways of combining the best of both worlds. Not to be underestimated, this gives an opportunity for abovementioned peg to round off and for the hole to become more edgy, thus learning from each others’ strengths and thus increasing their competitiveness.

In this context we ran the second in our series of InsurTechAsia events on 18 May in Singapore “Insurance #Collaborate”. With an exceptional level of interest and representation from all members of Insurtech ecosystem (startups, insurers, re-insurers, brokers, govn’t, VCs, and tech) it was really encouraging to see the group coming together in a positive way to get to know each-other and explore early collaboration opportunities.


Under our moto of: enhance rather than disrupt! we featured a diverse set of five startups which each had five minutes to share their teaser. Each presentation highlighted the part of the insurance value chain they are re-imagining, how and why.

You can find a video excerpt of the session here:

It was amazing to watch a buzzy networking after the brief presentations which clearly sparked interest in the audience. Its something that would have been very difficult to imagine just few short years back and is a sign that the collaboration rather than competition lessons from Fintech over the last 5 years are well learnt in insurance industry.

Following were the five startups that we’ve featured, with a brief background, in case you are wondering:

Latize: FRAUD DETECTION | BIG DATA | Latize is an upstart in the realm of business intelligence, data management and Big Data. In a world constantly bombarded and inundated by information, Latize is heralding the new age of harnessed and directed data. You might have a set of preconceived notions around how your company’s data can work for you. Whatever you had in mind, Latize is going to upend it, give it good shake, and set your data in front of you like you have never seen it before.

Wavecell: CLAIMS HANDLING | CUSTOMER COMMUNICATION | Wavecell adds real-time communications to any application or software. Wavecell provides cloud-based real-time communication services to Enterprises. Enterprises and Application Developers can simply integrate Wavecell APIs to add unified communication capabilities to their applications and services: SMS, push notifications, voice and video calls.

uHoo: IoT | SMART HOME | EB | Most advanced air sensor. See what you breathe in, predict when it is not safe and prevent yourself from getting asthma and allergies. Use if for either home or office.

PolicyPal: DISTRIBUTION | PolicyPal is the digital insurance manager for millennials. PolicyPal aims to make the process of buying and managing insurance simple, transparent and fair. We offer consumers an easy way to manage their insurance policies in a smart online portfolio and notifies him or her if he is over or underinsured.

UEX: DISTRIBUTION | PRODUCT | UEX start-up gives customers a more social way to subscribe and follow insurance. Its UEXPAT application will be the first health Insurance distribution platform both digital and in community, designed for all expatriates. Back to the roots of what insurance is, UEX believes that we need to restore confidence between customers and insurance. How? By innovating and simplifying insurance products, but also treating UEX customers as responsible peoples who can act to improve their coverage.


Overall I was really encouraged to see the energy and hear the positive feedback following the session. The intent of these events is to act as a pillar for Insurtech community here in Singapore and to help spur collaboration by brining a diverse groups together to have an open dialog and to get to know each other.

The next time we are bringing an even bigger group together will be on 23 June in Singapore. This time it will be corporates’ turn to take the stage to share their biggest pain points they are looking for startups to help and how to best partner with them. Will be a really interesting one and again we’ll livestream the event for those who couldn’t join us in person.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me in case you want to find out more about InsurTechAsia, the startups we’ve featured, and discuss collaboration opportunities.



Having worked at various departments in both life and general global insurers, with his last two roles being COO of AIG Indonesia and VP Claims Operations of AIG APAC — George Kesselman is a highly experienced global insurance executive with a strong track record of management and leadership across Asia. In his relentless passion and pursuit to transform insurance, George cofounded an industry-wide innovation ecosystem in Singapore. Through InsurTechAsia, he aims to effectively attract, cultivate and rapidly scale entrepreneurial ideas in insurance; and ultimately contribute to the next wave of global revolution in insurance.


Twitter: @mr_insurtech