From automation to intelligence: how to seize the SME insurance opportunity

Insurance needs of SMEs have often been misunderstood or underserved

From automation to intelligence: how to seize the SME insurance opportunity

Insurance News


SMEs are the lifeline of emerging economies. In Asia, the SME sector represents more than 96% of all companies and is responsible for two out of three private sector jobs on the continent. Despite these significant numbers, the insurance needs of SMEs have often remained misunderstood and underserved. The COVID-19 pandemic has further highlighted these unmet needs, creating unprecedented opportunities for the insurance sector to innovate and help SMEs thrive as they continue to contribute to economic recovery.

In this context, Democrance, a leading insurtech company based in Dubai, with a mission to democratize insurance, has been providing SaaS platform solutions to insurers – including global names like AXA, AIG, and MetLife - in 12 emerging countries across Asia, the MENA region, and Latin America over the last five years. Building on its extensive experience in SME insurance, Democrance has recently launched its new SaaS platform with four core capabilities to address the emerging needs of SMEs and insurance carriers.

Facilitating seamless, human-centric SME customer journeys

Some SME segments have suffered more than others during the pandemic. Although liability and property covers remain largely standardized across most segments, SMEs need help in customising covers such as business interruption, professional indemnity, cyber, workers’ compensation, and employee benefits.

Democrance’s new SME platform enables insurers to educate SMEs about their needs, ask relevant questions, and make recommendations to intelligently configure segment-specific customised policies (business owner’s policies) while quoting for the business. In doing so, Democrance helps ensure ease of doing business through seamless cross-channel customer journeys.

Enabling sales channels

SME insurance in the emerging economies remains heavily intermediated, with relatively low direct channel penetration (whether through online channels or call centres) and high broker/agent presence. For instance, more than 75% of SME business across Asia and the MENA region originates through agents and brokers.

Democrance’s SME platform enables insurance carriers as well as their sales channel partners such as agents, brokers and bancassurance stakeholders to serve their customers online. The built-in AI and intelligence layer empower them to target new customer segments, generate sales leads, and optimise hit rates (submission to quote) and sales conversion rates (quote to bind) through leveraging internal and external structured and unstructured data.

Balancing speed with underwriting effectiveness

In addition to advisory services and accelerating ease of doing business, SMEs value pricing and speed when it comes to submission, quotation, and binding. Democrance’s SME platform enables insurance carriers to automate their end-to-end sales, underwriting and pricing, as well as servicing and claims processes through connecting to their existing underwriting and rating models, or implementing online models. Automation powered by AI and intelligence helps insurance carriers enhance Straight-through Processing (STP) of policies, while lowering their expense ratios, and improving the accuracy of pricing.

Optimizing the SME ecosystem

SME ecosystems are expanding – from customers, agents and brokers to technology and data providers to industry consortiums, banks, and beyond. Democrance’s open API architecture platform enables seamless and real-time connectivity to these ecosystem partners that are growing increasingly significant in enabling insurance carriers to deliver the highest value to SMEs.

Above and beyond these capabilities, Democrance has ensured that its tech-first platform complies with the new regulations and data privacy requirements of digital insurance across various regulatory jurisdictions.

To learn more about Democrance and to schedule a demo of its SME platform, please visit

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