Friendsurance backs broker role

It could be seen as a competitor to the broker model but this firm sees growth for traditional brokers

Friendsurance backs broker role

Insurance News

By Jordan Lynn

The arrival of peer-to-peer insurance in Australia could be seen as a direct challenge to the broker model, but the man behind the launch has backed the role of the traditional broker.

Perry Abbott, CEO of Friendsurance Australia – which launched the first peer-to-peer policy in Australia last week – said that the broker community plays a vital role in the insurance industry.

“Brokers play a massively important role in giving people great advice in terms of how to deal with the risks in their life,” Abbott told Insurance Business.

“One of the reflections of going on the journey we’ve been on in terms of developing the product is that you are developing something that meets those needs. This is what brokers have to do every day – find products that are different and creative and cover off those needs. It is hard enough doing that for one client but trying to create a product that covers off lots and lots of clients is a complex task.”

As a certified broker himself, Abbott said that focusing on the strength of the product has been key to the development of Friendsurance and noted that the insurtech firm and brokers currently occupy different areas.

“The average broker wouldn’t want to place a policy for a bike insurance program. Unless you had 100[bikes], they wouldn’t want to do it,” Abbott said.

“Those skills and abilities are well applied to people with complex and difficult risks, facing situations where insurance is difficult or unaffordable. In segments where people have complex risk management requirements, there has to be nothing but growth – but probably not to sell a bike insurance policy.”

The cashback bike insurance product offered by Friendsurance is fully backed by Lloyd’s through coverholder NWC Insurance and has innovative features such as a commuter benefit which will see policyholders who use their bike to travel to work covered for alternative transport if their bike is damaged.

Related stories:
Friendsurance launches first Australian insurance product
Peer to peer insurance: act now or face a rapidly expanding threat

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