Yesterday, insurer Zurich announced Parametrix, as the UK finalist of its World Innovation Championship. The selection process whittled down 6 UK finalists at a Superday where startups presented their ideas with the potential to help Zurich explore new frontiers of innovation.
UK finalist Parametrix creates parametric (index-based) insurance policies, aimed at SMEs and others, offering compensation if their businesses are victim to downtime from their IT provider (Cloud, Payment Systems, ISP, E-shops, GPS and more) which can ultimately impact sales and profit.
Parametrix continuously monitor each service provider’s availability and performance and use this vast amount of data to analyse the risk to technology dependent businesses – such as online retailers. Policyholders who suffer disruption will be compensated by a pre-defined amount triggered by a validated outage event, providing business continuity and eliminating the costly claim process.
Founded in Israel, the company is looking to develop in the UK and globally. On being selected as UK finalist, both Zurich and Parametrix will collaborate to lay out plans for a pilot ahead of the EMEA round in June.
Parametrix is one of 26 country winners that will be narrowed to eight regional winners for the final round in Q3. Three winners will then have the chance to work with Zurich on a local pilot with the goal to scale it globally.
Mark Budd, Head of Innovation at Zurich in the UK added:
“The sheer number and quality of entries we’ve seen this year is indicative of the quality and range of capabilities currently coming through insuretech channels. It’s been a hugely gratifying process and whittling 169 applications down to 6 finalists was no mean feat – especially as there was such a broad range of ambitious and pioneering ideas put forward.
“The pursuit of innovation, for the benefit of our customers, is a pillar of Zurich Insurance UK’s growth ambitions so we’re thrilled to be presenting Parametrix as the UK champion. Our work doesn’t stop here and we will work tirelessly with the Parametrix team so they can put their best foot forward for the next round.”
Ori Cohen, Parametrix added: “We see the UK as a centre for insurance and being chosen as UK finalist is a great honour for us. We are very grateful for the opportunity to present to Zurich’s Executive team and are excited about the possibility of working in partnership to develop our solution to support Zurich’s customers globally. In addition to the US, the UK is a large market with high-profile customers that will benefit greatly from our innovation.”
The Zurich Innovation Championship has cemented its reputation as an attractive global contest for start-ups, with applications rising three-fold from the inaugural 2018/19 competition. A total of 1,358 submissions were received with ideas reflecting the tournament theme of ‘Protecting the Next Generation’, with 117 applications coming from UK-based start-ups. They include businesses as varied as a manufacturer of paints that use sunlight for cooling, an insect farm, and a community driven platform that empowers women by strengthening their financial knowledge.
The number of UK applications is the second highest if ranked by country submissions, with entries from 32 different countries, demonstrating the appetite of start-ups to collaborate with UK corporate partners to better serve the needs of today’s customer.