The Innovation Shadow Council is a subsidiary of the Innovation Council. Developed for young insurance professionals, it looks at new ideas and solutions to deliver to the London Market to benefit all stakeholders. The Innovation Shadow Council also offers networking opportunities, professional support and evaluates and makes recommendations for proof of concept considerations to the Innovation Council.
Ken Tashiro, Director, Strategic Services at ACORD, London, is a member of the Innovation Exchange’s Shadow Council. He talks about his passion for insurance and technology.
What did you do before working in insurance?
I joined the insurance industry when I took on my current role with ACORD in May this year. My background is in private equity investing combined with a pinch of entrepreneurialism: following employment with the large-cap PE fund BC Partners, I studied for my MBA and then co-founded a sports FinTech startup.
What interests you about innovation in the insurance market?
I believe that innovation is the key that will unlock the potential for the insurance industry to significantly reduce costs and increase customer centricity all along the value chain.
What is the most exciting technological development within insurance?
We still appear to be the in the phase of capital deployment from insurtech-focused funds, many of which are seeded by giant incumbents. Just as in any industry most of these startups will fail, but I am looking forward to seeing which of those that come out on top will do so by clever partnering with incumbents.
Why did you join the Shadow Innovation Council?
I knew that the Shadow Innovation Council would be a fantastic platform to keep abreast with innovation in insurance and to meet like-minded peers to exchange ideas.
What are you working on that has an innovation focus?
As part of my push for a stronger insurtech community, I am excited to be working on the ACORD Insurance Innovation Challenge. It is a great opportunity for both start-ups and industry innovators to pitch their idea to and be judged by a senior-level panel of industry leaders. The Finals will be held in conjunction with ACORD2017 in October this year in Boston, Massachusetts. We will be giving away prizes valued up to US$300,000, including a cash prize of $25,000 for the Startup Disruptor winner.
What are your predictions for change for 2017 in the London Market?
I expect the strong funding into insurtech startups to continue and for more partnerships with insurers to become apparent in the London Market.
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