RiskGenius Blog

Insights into our world of Insurance & Technology.

Clara Stahl

Recent Posts

Global Insurance Accelerator Series: Telematic

by Clara Stahl | May 06, 2016

On April 27, six #insurtech startups pitched at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.  


Tom Yates, one of the founders of Telematic, Inc. used to work for a large insurance carrier and helped design their usage-based insurance program. This is where he identified the need in the market for a smart phone app that can provide this kind of service. After coming up this this idea, he went home and built the application for a year. Marti Ryan was the CEO/COO of a technology market research and consulting company that focused on millennials. They met at a networking event, and together they have built Telematic into what it is today.

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Global Insurance Accelerator Series: Drive Spotter

by Clara Stahl | May 05, 2016 | Technology


On April 27, six #insurtech startups pitched at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.   


Chris Augeri was discussing the idea of visually simulating products around the time that Tracy Morgan was rear-ended by a tractor trailer. The driver of this trailer for Wal-Mart was largely at fault for the collision. This is when Chris began to look at using these products to help avoid crashes in the future, and to better train truck drivers. He began contacting the federal government and the Global Insurance Accelerator to gather interest in his company. 


At first when Chris joined the accelerator and was working on recruiting early investors, Driver Spotter was a hardware company. Some of the best feedback that Chris got from investors was that the initial start-up costs of $25 million, was too much. In order to bring in investors, he had to find a way to decrease costs. Chris decided to pivot the company, after realizing that he could bring that cost way down if he changed into a software only company. In the last round of funding, they raised $750,000, as a result of redirecting their company. 

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Global Insurance Accelerator Series: Insurance Social.Media

by Clara Stahl | May 03, 2016

On April 27, six #insurtech startups pitched at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.  


Elisabeth Deffner was a freelance writer who moved into editing for national and local publications, and then into corporate communications focusing on insurance. She and her partner, David Beall had been working together to consult companies on marketing plans for insurance agents. There was no software solution available for these agents that would have made their marketing plans easier, and that’s when Insurance Social.media was formed. They wanted to create a social media marketing platform that was a collaboration of agents and writers, to make an affordable, easy, and effective solution for insurance agents.

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Global Insurance Accelerator Series: Smart Drivinc

by Clara Stahl | May 02, 2016

On April 27, six #insurtech startups pitched at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.   


Shashaanka Ashili was a research scientist at Arizona State University leading multi-disciplinary technology development to understand cancer with an emphasis is bio-optical systems. He was trained as an electrical engineer, holds a PhD in optical physics, and completed a fellowship in medical devices and innovation. In 2014, his wife got into a non-fatal accident due to a distracted driver, which led Shahaanka to do some research. The statistics he found were startling. In first half of 2015 alone, fatal motor vehicle accidents increased by more than 14% with drivers distracted by technology as one of the main causes. Currently 26% of all accidents in the U.S. are because of drivers on their cell phones. He wanted to build something that was affordable for everyday families and consumers to reduce distracted driving, and ultimately help reduce the number of fatal accidents. This was the founding idea behind Smart Drivinc. Shashaanka is a proud, self-proclaimed disruptor and first mover. There are many driving solutions and applications out there, but none quite with the same value proposition as Smart Drivinc.

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Global Insurance Accelerator Series: Pablow

by Clara Stahl | Apr 29, 2016 | Technology

On April 27, six #insurtech startups will pitched at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.  We look forward to seeing you in Des Monies! 


Steve (Pablow’s CEO and co-founder) is an avid traveler, he’s been to around 50 countries, and loves the “buzz” of going to new places. His parents immigrated from Ireland to Australia when he was one, and he used to travel a lot with his mom when he was younger. Traveling is something he loves and feels comfortable doing. He’s been involved in travel technology for the last 17 years, and the last 4 years in travel insurance. He saw a gap in the way travel insurance is created, sold, and what travelers are actually wanting for their insurance. Traditionally, travel insurance is sold in a one-size-fits-all manner, so that it can be applied to a larger number of people, but oftentimes that isn’t what customers are actually looking for. Pablow is looking to change that via predictive analytics.

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Global Insurance Accelerator Series: WeSavvy

by Clara Stahl | Apr 20, 2016 | Technology


On April 27, six #insurtech startups will be pitching at the Global Insurance Symposium.  RiskGenius will be posting a series of articles on the Global Insurance Accelerator companies.  We look forward to seeing you in Des Monies! 


Hesus (CEO and founder of WeSavvy) suffered from a lifestyle that some of us are guilty of at one point or another. Poor eating habits, not exercising enough, never working off those extra pounds gained from working at a desk job or from former college days. In 2013, after having a revelation about his weight and health, he lost over 50 pounds by running and eating healthy. Despite his decrease in weight, his insurance premiums increased the next year.


Insurance companies aren’t rewarding those willing to change their lives and become healthier, thus creating the need for WeSavvy. Their mission is to put policyholders first by rewarding them for reaching their fitness goals, and to continue to incentivize them with cash/other bonuses when they increase their activity levels. This will ultimately improve their overall health and well being, while rewarding them with cash points and benefits on their insurance premiums.


Traditionally, health and life insurance is set-up so that young policyholders subsidize older ones. Premiums continuously increase, regardless of increased (or decreased) risk based on health. Often-times younger healthy policyholders end up paying more and more, which can cause them to not want to get things like life insurance, and cause dissatisfaction with their current health insurance policies and premiums.

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What can IBM's Watson do for insurance?

by Clara Stahl | Apr 01, 2016 | Technology


You probably remember Watson from when this cognitive computing system defeated two human champions during a three-day match on Jeopardy. This happened about five years ago, and generated a positive PR storm for IBM and the future of AI and analytics. Even more important than the $1 million prize, was the fact that in order to beat its human adversaries, Watson could not simply just recall facts, but had to use reasoning, interpret statements contextually, and strategize. 


For those unfamiliar, Watson is a “technology platform that uses natural language processing and machine learning to reveal insights from large amounts of unstructured data”. Watson performs two key functions in its commercial application; those being answer customers’ questions, rapidly interpret insights, relationships, and patterns from important information that it extracts from provided documents. IBM claims that 80% of data today is unstructured, meaning that it comes from news articles, social media posts, and other sources.

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How to create a competitive advantage with insurance technology

by Clara Stahl | Mar 18, 2016 | Technology

There has been a lot of discussion lately in the media and between agents about insurance technology and how big changes are coming to the insurance industry. Recently we have been focusing on insurance technology start-ups, their growth, and how they are affecting the current landscape. But what should agents, brokers and companies do about it?


Adopt technological innovations, of course.


Embracing technology will help agents, companies, and brokers to meet rising policyholder needs and expectations. There is a specific need for innovation in companies' IT infrastructure to improve the collection, storage, and use of data.  Read on for specific technology that can be adopted by insurance professionals ready to compete with insurance technology companies hoping to disrupt the industry.

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The Insurance Push Model is Dying

Chris's Note:  I asked Clara Stahl, RiskGenius Marketing Analyst, to write about how she views insurance.  While there are many articles claiming to understand millennials and insurance, I thought it would be helpful to hear directly from a millennial.  Her message is simple:  the traditional manner of selling insurance won't work anymore.  Make sure you read to the end, where Clara provides tips for all insurance agents selling to millennials.  


As a person in my twenties, I do not have many insurance needs. I have my health insurance plan, my renters insurance, and soon I will be needing an auto-insurance policy. Despite my current needs, I cannot tell you the countless times I have gotten unsolicited phone calls and emails from agents and insurance companies (my current providers and others) about things that I am not yet ready to buy.


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Google Compare is done for now... is this a sign of over-saturation in the insurance comparison market?


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