Insurtech Lemonade Opens Its Sales Platform for All to Use

One to watch, now with even greater customer service and enhanced marketing potential with other related business to complement their offerings with insurance, allowing their customers instant coverage and a hassle-free experience without ever leaving their app or website.

Lemonade announced Tuesday that it launched a public API (application programming interface), allowing anyone to seamlessly offer Lemonade policies through their apps or websites.

The insurtech home insurer announced: “Today, we’re thrilled to announce that we’re opening up the Lemonade platform to the world!

“For the first time, developers will be able to easily incorporate insurance into their own experience, alongside their main products,” Lemonade Co-Founder Shai Wininger wrote in a blog item on the Lemonade website published the same day that his company delivered the news in a media statement.


Specifically, the media statement urged developers of commerce sites, real estate apps, financial advisors, bots, IoT and smart home products to use the open platform. They “will now be able to complement their offerings with insurance, allowing their customers instant coverage and a hassle-free experience without ever leaving their app or website,” Lemonade said.


“It takes years to pull together the licenses, capital and technology needed to offer insurance instantly through an app, which is why it’s almost nonexistent. Today’s API launch changes that. Anyone with a slight familiarity with coding can now include these capabilities in their app, in a matter of hours,” said Wininger in the statement.


Through its API platform, Lemonade will initially offer developers access to its renters, condo and homeowners insurance.


The new Lemonade API supports easy quoting, policy creation and claims payment in Lemonade’s active markets of New York, California, Texas, Illinois, New Jersey and Rhode Island.


As Lemonade introduces new insurance products to market, the API will expand too, the company said.


Lemonade, which describes itself as an “insurance company powered by artificial intelligence and behavioral economics,” unveiled a different kind of open environment in August—allowing insurance customers to make coverage changes on their own. Specifically, the “Live Policy” option allows insureds to make changes to provisions like deductibles or limits, or to add or deleted covered parties, without call a customer service representative or waiting for an agent or broker to handle the process.[…]

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Drones, tractor hacks and robotic sprayers: the technology of farming

The Hands Free Hectare project, out of Harper Adams University in the U.K., successfully planted, tended and harvested 1.5 acres of barley using only autonomous vehicles and drones.

The Hands Free Hectare project, out of Harper Adams University in the U.K., successfully planted, tended and harvested 1.5 acres of barley using only autonomous vehicles and drones. (Hands Free Hectare) ​


​Farming may not be the first industry that comes to mind when we think of technological advancement, but that’s changing — fast.


Agricultural giant John Deere, for instance, just spent $305 million to buy a robotics company. The farm machine manufacturer has been around for almost two centuries, but it too has felt the need to keep up with changing trends and tools, says Deanna Kovar, a marketing director for John Deere.


Its acquisition, Blue River Technology, is a startup that makes agricultural robots capable of identifying weeds and other unwanted plants, and dosing them with high-precision sprays of herbicide.


The smart sprayers operate much the same way as conventional spraying equipment, but these come equipped with computer vision, artificial intelligence and automated sprayers, with cameras that use machine-learning software to discern the difference between plants.


‘Some People assume farmers don’t use technology’

Right about now, you might be picturing farming Transformers that morph from tractors into bipedal robots and march through fields shooting pesticides out of spray guns.


In fact, these new robots work in conjunction with a traditional tractor. That’s part of their appeal for a company like John Deere — the smart machines aren’t making tractors obsolete but, rather, their addition makes the farming tools more advanced, and more appealing to potential consumers.[…]

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“I don’t think the industry is doing enough to innovate” – Lloyd’s Chairman

Lloyd’s new Chairman, Bruce Carnegie-Brown, has called for a renewed emphasis on modernisation of the 300 year old insurer, saying that while Lloyd’s underwriting performance has been strong, the firm’s success is stunted by its overweight cost structure, in an interview with the Financial Times.

“I don’t think the industry is doing enough to innovate,” he told the FT, explaining the challenges of updating technologies and digitising insurance systems, the firm’s progress in which he called “lumpy” so far and in need of revolutionising to remain competitive:


“People arrive . . . with files of documents. Those documents have to be photocopied, and those photocopies have to be scanned and digitised. If it was in digital form right at the beginning we could reduce the costs for the brokers in bringing business to Lloyd’s, reduce the costs for the underwriters in capturing the data and improve the quality of analytics.”


“There isn’t anyone who runs a syndicate here who isn’t aware of the need to create digital solutions to challenges and there isn’t anyone in the millennial generation joining Lloyd’s who doesn’t get frustrated with the fact that they have better technology at home than they have at work.”


“Until we convert everything from analogue to digital, we’ve got unnecessary costs,” Carnegie-Brown told the Financial Times.


The Lloyd’s Chairman said previous failed attempts to innovate and introduce new digital platforms and tools have meant “progress is lumpy because self-confidence is not as high as it needs to be.”


“Lloyd’s has tried to modernise before and it hasn’t been terribly successful, so people are sceptical of this but it’s a mindset issue, not a technology issue.”


“If you look at the largest companies by market cap now they are mostly characterised by intangible assets rather than tangible assets and we’ve got to make sure the industry is innovative enough to respond to those opportunities.”


Lloyd’s has reported progress in its underwriting in the first half of 2017, however, this is offset by lower profit and return on capital and if recent event loss estimates prove to be accurate, Lloyd’s profits will likely be wiped out for the remaining year, demonstrating the urgent need for the insurer to transform and streamline its business.[…]

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