Inzmo-Mitgründerin Meeri Rebane: „Große Versicherer sind sehr offen für neue Geschäfte und innovative Lösungen“
Das Berliner Insurtech Inzmo hat in der letzten Woche frisches Kapital über 3,1 Mio. Euro bekommen. Das Geld stammt unter anderem vom Schweizer Versicherer Helvetia. VWheute sprach exklusiv mit Mitgründerin Meeri Rebane über die aktuellen Ziele und die Innovationsfreudigkeit in der Branche.
VWheute: You have just completed a funding round in the middle of the pandemic. Why do you succeed in something where other insurtechs fail. What makes your business model special.
Meeri Rebane: The insurance industry is definitely very open today to new business and innovative solutions to improve the whole customer experience and internal processes. The whole industry will strongly focus on customer experience this year as it did in 2020. It’s the solutions that make the lives of the consumer easier but also bring new business that are the ones attracting the necessary funding. Insurance is today where banking was about 10 years ago with the same inefficiency issues. That means there is a massive opportunity to bring great changes and innovation to this space by technology.
VWheute: Is a German insurer among the financiers? Are German insurers and financiers difficult to convince?
Meeri Rebane: No, we do not have a German insurer/VCs among our investors, but we had German angels investing in our very early days. There are definitely great opportunities in the German market for startups to raise funds as the startup scene is very active with many angel investors and VC funds available. Also, some German insurers are looking for innovative solutions to invest into, therefore there are many opportunities for insurtechs to raise funds in Germany. The fundraising process with German financiers is not any more difficult than with other European VCs. It’s standard to have to pitch to hundreds of investors to get a few onboard and mostly it is about building a relationship for months (or years) beforehand.
VWheute: Which partners do you work with in which framework for your offers. (According to media reports Check24, the online mail order company Notebooksbilliger.de and companies like Uber or Delivery Hero)
Meeri Rebane: Our technology makes it very easy for the partner to offer additional value to their customers no matter whether they are operating online or offline. Therefore, we are focused on finding good B2B2C partners to bring the product offering close to the consumer and make it a hassle-free experience for all parties involved. As our main offerings so far have been electronics and bike insurance products, our partners are the above-mentioned e-commerce channels, but also bike-retailers. For a successful distribution of the rental deposit guarantee, we are also partnering with brokers, landlords, associations, etc.
VWheute: You are working with Société Générale on the rental deposit guarantee, which is about to start. How do you find such partners as a young company, how does it work in practice?
Meeri Rebane: The large insurers are actually very open to new business and innovation, but it needs to be borne in mind that these negotiations usually take time and a product launch can take 6-18 months depending on the business case. When convincing an insurance partner, there has to be a very strong business case in which all parties strongly believe in, because it also takes a lot of effort from the insurers side to launch a new product or partnership. INZMO’s strong advantage is that we provide a full service to the customers and our insurers do not have to worry about any IT-developments, customer service or claims handling and only focus on underwriting. We aim to be a completely hassle-free partner also to our insurers and bring a lot of value on the table with the technology.
VWheute: They want to offer new offers and increase their personnel. Is it difficult to keep the balance between expansion and improvement of the past?
Meeri Rebane: The main key here is focus and in the coming years, we will be focusing solely on the German market to become a very strong player in the digital insurance space with real-estate related product offerings. Our company structure has always been very lean compared to other successful insurtechs and incumbents, which enables us to move rapidly and efficiently in the market. Our aim has been to build a strong platform to automate as much as possible in the whole insurance process, which has a direct impact on our own structure, headcount and costs.
VWheute: What is your vision of the insurance market of tomorrow and what is your role in it?
Meeri Rebane: The expectation of the consumer is to manage all their insurance affairs independently and in no time. Therefore the insurance offerings need to be extremely simple and accessible in an instant. We will definitely see a lot of offerings being embedded into other products/services and insurance becoming a normal add-on.
The best way to forecast the future of insurance is to look at the banking sector where a similar shift started already years ago. Similar to banking services, the consumers expect to have all their insurance services right in their pocket and easily manageable.
Our goal is definitely to be one of the flagships in Europe in the insurance space when it comes to introducing the market with new innovative digital solutions and serving consumers in the expected way.
VWheute: What are your goals for 2021 and when do you want to be in the black?
Meeri Rebane: In 2021 we are focusing on successfully introducing the rental deposit guarantee product in Germany, securing strong partnerships and to invest in new product offerings. Getting a significant market share will definitely require some great investments, but we will still keep a very cost efficient approach with a lean company structure and hope to run in the black already next year.
Die Fragen stellte VWheute-Redakteur Maximilian Volz.