It looks like Munich Re is serious about its digital strategy.
Announcing its swoop for software company relayr, which is valued at US$300 million, Munich Re said it is taking a key step in creating business models in the industrial Internet of Things (IoT). Through its subsidiary Hartford Steam Boiler (HSB), the 100% acquisition will see the development of solutions that offer not only technology but also risk management, data analysis, and financial instruments.
A rapidly growing IoT firm, relayr provides enterprise middleware and IoT solutions for the digital transformation of industries. It employs around 200 people based in offices in seven cities in the US, UK, Germany, and Poland.
“The Internet of Things is already changing our world and has the potential to disrupt the traditional insurance and reinsurance industry through new business models, services, and competitors,” commented Munich Re management board member Torsten Jeworrek. “This acquisition is a clear example of our strategy: we are combining our own knowledge of risk, data analysis skills, and financial strength with relayr’s technological expertise.”
Boston-headquartered relayr will become part of the Munich Re and HSB network but will continue to operate autonomously, retaining its start-up culture in order to drive innovation and attract IoT talent.
“HSB has always focused on insurance and technology,” noted Greg Barats, president and chief executive of HSB in charge of Munich Re’s IoT strategy. “Back in 2016, HSB invested in relayr in an effort to harness the strategically significant business potential offered by IoT. relayr’s end-to-end IoT solutions for the industrial and commercial sectors are an ideal addition to our group’s capabilities.
“relayr will help us to rapidly implement our global strategy to develop new IoT solutions for our clients. Digital transformation in the industrial and commercial sectors offers opportunities for new services and financial applications.”
Josef Brunner, CEO of relayr, believes the unique combination brought about by the deal demonstrates the importance of applying first-class technology and powerful financial and insurance offerings to deliver business outcomes to customers.