That insurance is a dominant Connecticut industry will come as no surprise to anyone. The state ranks #1 in the U.S. in insurance employment as a percent of total employment, #1 in the U.S. in insurance gross state product as a percent of total GSP, and #1 in the U.S. in insurance payroll as a percent of total payroll, according to data included in the 2020 Connecticut insurance market brief, produced for the Connecticut Insurance and Financial Services (CT IFS), a statewide initiative of the MetroHartford Alliance.
The insurance sector is a significant part of the state’s economy, creating more than $16 billion in output in the region, and as was recently highlighted in the publication Business Facilities, “while the insurance landscape continues to evolve, the state’s insurance and financial services (IFS) companies are implementing strategies and technologies to enhance the customer and employee experience and create timely, innovative solutions to today’s challenges.”
The insurance industry, a mainstay for more than two centuries, is anything but stagnant. As the 2020 CT Insurance Market Brief points out, “A few years ago, insurance companies tended to look at InsurTechs as a competitive, disruptive threat. Now, they tend to see a growth opportunity.”
Importantly, CT IFS points out, insurers have more recently “started paying much more attention to newcomers. They’ve become some of the largest funders of these startups, recognizing that teaming up with technology firms can be a game-changer.”
The CT IFS report also pointed out that “Ongoing issues highlighted by the pandemic include the cost of insurance and consumer inclusion. This pandemic has put a spotlight on the need for people to have access to insurance at a reasonable price. The insurance industry can help lead the charge in making insurance more accessible and inclusive, possibly through products like microinsurance or through technology solutions with InsurTechs.”
Hartford is globally recognized, Business Facilities pointed out, “for its innovative InsurTech ecosystem and the region draws companies from all over the globe. In 2018, multinational information technology corporation Infosys selected Hartford as one of six locations in the United States to house a regional Technology and Innovation hub, helping accelerate Hartford’s and Connecticut’s distinction for its innovation ecosystem.”
Early-stage InsurTech companies choose the Hartford Region because they recognize the value of locating in one of the world’s strongest insurance clusters, where they’ll find the resources needed to solve global issues in life, annuity, property and casualty, reinsurance, and digital health markets.
Hartford InsurTech Hub
Hartford InsurTech Hub has been described as a “collaboration of insurance carriers, City of Hartford representatives and community stakeholders all focused on industry evolution through collaboration and innovation.”
Dawn M. LeBlanc, Managing Director of Hartford InsurTech Hub, Startupbootcamp/ Rainmaking, notes that Hartford InsurTech Hub takes “a fresh look at insurance in order to innovate and discover new solutions to issues that aren’t yet fully articulated. Breaking rules for fruitful outcomes—it’s happening here in Hartford.”
In addition, Launc[H]artford (formerly known as the Hartford Innovation Place Program) is a community-led effort to make Hartford a visible and vibrant hub of innovation and entrepreneurship. Launc[H] partners are providing connections to industry experts across the Hartford region in the fields of InsurTech, Advanced Manufacturing and MedTech. According to Launc[H]artford, over the past three years the region has fostered nearly 800 entrepreneurs and helped or scaled up more than 200 businesses.
InsurTech Hartford is a grassroots organization, founded and run by local insurance professionals.
Upward Hartford is a global incubator with a vision to re-invigorate cities through a generation of innovators with ideas that are fostered through connection, learning, and experience.
“The concentration of insurance companies in Hartford and Connecticut makes a strong case for startups seeking partners with our local insurers and for companies looking to expand into a market that fully understands the new world of insurance,” Nassau Re Chief Marketing Officer Paul Tyler told Business Facilities.