Going big at the biggest InsurTech conference in Europe

Written at Jul 31, 2023 2:10:01 PM by Dave Connors

It felt appropriate to “go big” at the biggest InsurTech conference in town… and so 8 of the team attended InsurTech Insights Europe across the 2 days. With thousands of attendees, 100 networking tables!, multiple panels/discussions and stands with beer, wine, and popcorn, we needed to be able to spread ourselves around the conference while keeping a presence at our stand. 

Speaking to some of my team before, I described ITI as “the world’s most boring funfair – popcorn, games, beer… and insurance.” Tongue-in-cheek, of course – there was a lot of interesting (for insurance) presentations and discussions. My team attended talks on topics around embedded insurance, AI data analytics, Chat-GPT and bionic underwriting. At the stand, we were delighted with the interest and our brand recognition… curing the insurance industry of its spreadsheet addiction is a message that lands! 

At such a big conference, you need a plan and the Brella app networking was particularly useful. Across the 2 days – even allowing for me not arriving until after 1pm on day 2 due to other commitments – my meetings booked ran well into double figures. My meetings spanned from 10am day 1 into the sky-bar at the after party at the end of day 2! In between I talked myself hoarse at the networking tables, on the stand and mingling. Only the free beer and wine lubricating the vocal chords stopped me losing my voice altogether… (Actually, I’m currently writing this while sucking on a Strepsil, so I’m not out of the woods yet!) 

My 3 hot takes from the 2 days: 

  • Huge appetite for Embedded Insurance from carriers and innovation in distribution, but the data exchange element hasn’t been worked out… high volume low premium only works with friction-free reporting 

  • The excitement around Chat-GPT, felt a little bit like conferences 5 or 6 years ago when “AI” meant “engineer with no insurance experience has built a chat-bot”… ultimately the really exciting AI use cases for insurance remain in data processing and analytics 

  • Business cards are back… we saw this at TINTech initially – this seems a change from even late last year when it was rare you were offered a card. Since then we got everyone digital Business Cards – tap or scan and we’re in the contacts straight away. They really impressed everyone I connected with, and allowed me to pull out a cheesy joke “…see, we’re saving you time re-keying already” 

But there were 2 other stand-outs for me… the first might be an example of the economics of agglomeration. With so many people in one place, there’s going to be great stuff happening. Over the course of 2 days I made a ton of new connections, saw some old friends I hadn’t seen for ages, met a fellow founder from the same Lloyd’s Lab cohort who I’d never met in person before because we were the last “Covid” cohort, got some promising leads … where else can you do all that in 1 building whilst chugging IPA and eating pic-n-mix? 

And the other, takes me full circle. Attending with a big team was a striking reminder of the success and growth we’ve enjoyed at distriBind over the last 12 months. Half of the team attending ITI joined since October last year. Seeing the team work together – deciding who was going to what talk, who was going to be on the stand, sharing notes on who they’d spoken to, what questions were asked and how to answer them – was inspiring. Getting together as a team at the end of each day and having a few more drinks and laughs was great for bonding too… the whole 2 days sharpening my belief in what an awesome team I’m lucky enough to have. 

If you want to find out how awesome they are, get in touch. We’ll help your data exchange, show you AI use cases much better than Chat-GPT, and save you re-keying. If you ask nicely, I’ll even throw in some IPA and pic-n-mix. 

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Dave Connors

CEO & Founder