The latest happenings in the insurtech community we think might interest the Massachusetts insurance industry.
Boston Retains The Top Spot For Entrepreneurial Growth
For the second year in a row, Boston has edged out the San Francisco Bay Area as the most innovative city in America. Taking the top spot the Innovation That Matters rankings, an annual report released by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Free Enterprise, C_TEC, and 1776. Rounding out the rest of the top five cities were San Francisco, Philadelphia, San Diego, and Austin. The report, now in its third edition, has created a unique index to compare and contrast key statistics of the top 25 cities to determine how well they are transforming capital into successful tech industries. The index emphasizes the importance of next-wave startups and the development of innovative solutions to complex problems throughout various industries.
“These rankings represent far more than just bragging rights,” said Evan Burfield, co-founder and CEO of 1776. “Investments in next-wave industries have the potential to drastically change the landscape of entrepreneurship in the United States. Communities, companies, and local governments now face the challenge of nurturing and supporting these young businesses, developing them into permanent contributors to city economies.”
Those cities able to combine a vibrant next-wave startup community with new capital and innovative talent ranked the highest.
This year’s research revealed a striking sense of disengagement between startups, industry leaders, and civic institutions,” said J.D. Harrison, senior director of strategic communications at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “In the digital economy, cities that build strong connections between local entrepreneurs and key stakeholders will be the ones that develop the most vibrant technology ecosystems—and they will be the ones best positioned to lead in the decades ahead.”
In its explanation for why Boston is tops, the report says:
Boston Leads Due to Connectivity and Access to Talent
Boston tops the Innovation that Matters rankings for the second year in a row. The city has the densest population of startups of the cities measured and ranks first in access to capital. Boston’s growing access to talent is a boon for the city, and its steady pipeline of next-wave innovators contributes to its vibrant startup community. Investment by city and civic leaders, universities and other research institutions also contributed to its rise in this year’s connectivity ranking.
For those interested in reading the entire report, you can access it here. For us, it just continues to prove that Boston is a great place for the insurtech community to grow, speaking of which…
Insurtech Boston sweetens the deal with a discount for Agency Checklists’ readers
With Insurtech Boston IV just around the corner, the team behind the event, Ask Kodiak Co-Founders Mike Albert and Allan Egbert are offering Agency Checklists’ readers an exclusive discount to this year’s event. Enter the code “agency-checklists” for a discounted ticket to this great event. This time around, the insurtech community will take over the entire District Hall to make sure there is enough room to hang out and network all night long.
SinglePoint Sneak Preview
Boston’s original #insurtech, Boston Software, has inviting Big Event attendees to try out the company’s new SinglePoint Rating software. SinglePoint Rating is the on-line version of the company’s original WinRater product. The next generation comparative rating software program is now completely on-line with a newer, faster, and easy-to-use interface.
For those who are interested in test-driving the new software, you can stop by the Boston Software’s usual spot at Booth #45. For those who are not planning on attending this year’s event, do not fear, the Boston Software team also is offering weekly training webinars starting this Wednesday and running every Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. through the month of November.
Go With the Flo-Progressive Launches New Auto Insurance Bot
Progressive has become the first top ten insurer to launch an auto insurance bot in Facebook Messenger. The Flo Chatbot allows users to begin the auto insurance quoting process right through Facebook Messenger, by allowing them to chat with Flo. The company says if Flo gets tongue-tied on a question, an experienced Progressive representative will be waiting in the wings to continue the conversation either on the phone or via private messaging.
“We know our customers are busy and they are looking for convenient ways to access information about insurance,” said Dan Witalec, Customer Acquisition Leader at Progressive. “By creating the Flo Chatbot for Messenger we are able to make the process of getting an auto quote as simple as possible by ‘talking’ with them exactly where they are on Messenger.”
In March of this year, Cambridge-based insurtech startup Insurify announced that it was the first company to launch an insurance comparison service on Facebook Messenger. With 1.38 billion monthly active users worldwide as of June 2017, it is fast becoming the go-to way to reach customers that many insurers and agents can ill afford to ignore.