Insurtech Insights Takeaways

Image of Europe's largest Insurtech conference in London.

Last week, the annual Insurtech Insight event was held in London. This event brings together people from all over Europe who want to stay up to date with trends, predictions, and innovations in the insurance market and meet prominent industry speakers and leaders.

We participated in this event and this was already the third time. On this occasion, we thought we would summarize the experiences we had, what we took away, and what we suggest to similar start-ups at such events.

The first and perhaps most important question: Is it worth attending a conference in person?

In today's online world, there is a wealth of knowledge at your fingertips and it is very easy to get in touch with anyone from anywhere in the world. But the answer is definitely yes!

Atmosphere and personality cannot yet be replaced by any online event in my opinion. I still believe that personal first impressions matter a lot, we can find common ground much more quickly, such as the way to the conference, the catering of the event, the quality of the coffee served, the location or the weather - all of which lead to a much more direct conversation. So yes, for industry contacts I would strongly recommend face-to-face meetings if there is an opportunity and a conference is a great way to do this, someone else will do the hard work for you and bring key people together, you just need to be proactive.

๐Ÿ™๏ธ But let's turn to our specific case and talk a little bit about the London event. If you can talk about the insurance capital, London is the city. There are many insurance institutions with a long history in the city, ย and if you take a deep whiff of the air, you smell money. And as a Middle Eastern European, I always smile at the number of blue-shirted travelers in Patagonia vests who flock along London's 12 subway lines to Canary Wharf, after I take a nearly empty( except attendees) train to the Greenwich peninsula, where the Insurtech Insight conference is being held.

The conference itself is a two-day event, but keep an eye out for side events that are dedicated to insurtech throughout the week. ย We arrived a day early to attend one of these events, which was a panel discussion organized by Headline Media on brand building and sustainable growth.

๐Ÿ“ฒ Your Best Friend, Brella

Okay okay, but how do you find these events? The best way is to find them directly in the dedicated app, Brella. Speaking of Brella, the app is a super tool to navigate the event, find the event map, and the presentations, and even arrange meetings with the attendees, so it's recommended to use it. In practice, I think you can't do anything without the app, especially since there are 5 big stages with about 12,000 participants on 3 levels.

My second piece of advice is related to this, on the one hand, download the app early and start booking meetings in time because the really desirable attendees will quickly run out of 15-minute meeting blocks. On the other hand, in the days immediately before the event, recheck who is attending and who you might be interested in having a discussion with because a lot of people register in the app at the last minute. It may also happen that someone does not respond, or does not confirm your booking, in this case, check if there is someone else from that company attending the event and try to reach them as well.

What's even cool is that you get a calendar entry for all confirmed appointments, which can be useful when Brella doesn't want to fill your planned schedule due to the heavy workload, it happened to me a couple of times this year, but it wasn't too bad.

๐ŸŒ‡ The Venue

The event will be hosted at the Intercontinental next to the O2 Arena. It's an easily accessible venue, and there were signs from the metro exit directing volunteers to the event, so you can't get lost. This year the entry was super quick, if I counted correctly there were 4 desks after the entrance where you could pick up your badges. The event consisted of 3 floors, on the ground floor you could find the insurtech startups' booths in the tech showcase area and fun stuff like a smoothie bar next to an open stage. On the first floor was the main stage with the biggest presentations and here you could also find a lot of stands with lots of cool installations.

Main stage

๐Ÿ‘ Thanks to Instanda, you could always grab a glass of good wine here, or thanks to the guys from Solera you could open the day with a beer on tap, and thanks to Bolttech you could spend time in the game area between two sessions or meetings. The second floor was all about networking, if you set up a meeting with someone on the Brella app you could meet your partner here at the numbered tables, there were 150 tables if I counted correctly, so you can imagine how busy this place was with so many tables changing hands every 15 minutes.

The networking area with 150 tables

๐Ÿค The energy here is somewhat electrifying, but sometimes it has made it difficult to understand your partner clearly without yelling. There were also two other stages at this level, and you could take part in the workshops here. As for the location, I must also mention the view of the Canary Wharf skyscrapers, which provided a pretty good background for the negotiations.

View with mini pancakes

๐Ÿ‘ There were a lot of good presentations and panel discussions about the insurance industry, of course, the hottest topic was AI, but there were also talks on embedded insurance trends, metaverse, parametric insurance, mobility, fraud, cybersecurity, distribution, Gen Z, investments, how incubents and startups can work well together and a lot of other interesting topics.

This is where I think the biggest challenge comes in, how you can be inspired and attend all these presentations at the same time and make time to network and generate new leads for your business. Well, you can't do it alone, so I recommend that you don't attend this event alone, to balance this you need a colleague with whom you can share these activities. We did, so Milan was the one who went with me to the event this year. He's also preparing a post about the event which you can read next week in our newsletter, he'll be giving a more detailed insight into the useful ideas that were shared during the event.

I also have a suggestion for the organizers, it was more manageable last year's placement when the big stages were mostly on one floor, so I didn't have to run from the third-floor red stage, through the networking area, to the blue stage on the ground floor to listen to another presentation.

๐Ÿ‘Ž Another solution could be to watch back online at the presentations that I couldn't attend, but I guess that would require me to buy next year's ticket, only negative point I have to give to the organization of Insurtech Insight, as I think the price should include the recorded presentations from the event, not to price it into the ticket for next year's event, I have not come across such a business approach.

๐ŸŒ๏ธโ€โ™‚๏ธ As I mentioned, it's also worth visiting the side events, which are great opportunities to not be bored in your accommodation after the main event but to take advantage of every moment in London to get inspired or to develop new business. We also took this opportunity and on the first day after the main event we spent time on the local golf range and got to meet new people, organized by EOS ventures and Solano Partners.

Golf with a view

๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ After golf we closed the first day of the conference with a dinner with the other Hungarian delegations attending the event in a Chinese casino downtown, just to be authentic. For me, it was also a great experience that our small country is finally present with more representatives at such an event. Perhaps it shows that slowly but surely insurance innovation in the Eastern European region is not just the playground of the big insurers.

The second day was quiet and short for us as our flight home left in the afternoon. Maybe this is something I will change next year, leaving more time for the second conference day.

๐Ÿ‘‹ All in all, a great event and I would recommend it to anyone working in the industry, there is no other opportunity like it where you can meet so many relevant people in such a high-quality venue. This year, I felt at home and like a family, meeting lots of familiar faces and getting to know so many new ones.

By the way, you can buy your tickets for next year here:

(Not if you ask, unfortunately, I don't get a commission ๐Ÿ˜„)

Thanks for organizing Kristoffer Lundberg, see you next year!