The start-up Swinz is developing a range of insurance products for young people, all managed by decentralized blockchain technology.
Brussels start-up Swinz is developing an innovative concept of blockchain-based insurance contracts. The start-up targets millennial customersthe younger generations, with an online insurance offer whose specificity is that it is managed by this “block chain” technology, which is the basis of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
The use of blockchain technology in the field of insurance has become obvious to the creators of Swinz.
The blockchain can be compared to an online ledger where information, operations and transactions are recorded. Its peculiarity is to operate in a decentralized way. The blockchain does not depend on software driven by a central server. It works in a distributed way and is managed by all its users, who are networked through the Internet.
The advantage of this technology is to provide all users with a reliable, verified and intangible information. Blockchain is a well known technology unforgivable. It is used to store data, record online transactions and provide all users with an “official” view of the information history written therein.
The use of blockchain technology in the field of insurance became obvious to the creators of Swinz Didier Muréna, Kim Lauwers and Lorenzo del Marmol. For Didier Muréna, co-founder of the start-up, the primary use of this innovative technology is to offer proof of authenticity of insurance contracts integrated into the blockchain. These contracts are set in digital stone and cannot be changed without notifying users. At any time, users (customers, intermediaries or insurers) can check the changes made to the contracts.
The blockchain also leads to decentralized storage solution, less expensive than commercial companies offering cloud offers (dematerialized online storage). The Swinz system works the Hyperledger blockchainan open source solution accessible for free.
“We want to offer a customizable solution, adapted to each individual.”
Swinz’s offer is specifically aimed at the digitally oriented younger generation. It is a multi-branch product that revolves around liability insurance : tenant liability, private life liability, accident liability… The start-up wants to gradually add options such as pet insurance or insurance covering damage caused to a laptop or smartphone.
Swinz also imagines supplementing its offer with car insurance or assistance abroad. “We want to provide a customizable solution, adapted to each individual“, says Didier Muréna.
The entrepreneur, who worked for five years at Zurich Insurance, created Insurnode at the end of 2021, a platform that aims to create “insurance as a service”. The Swinz project, which benefited from a fundraising of one million euros raised by private investors, is the first realization of this ambition. Insurnode is a platform developed by InsurTree, which at the end of 2022 carried out a capital increase of 5 million euros.
The Swinz solution is technically ready, it is currently under development. test with its first users. The commercial offer should go out by the end of the first quarter of 2023. Negotiations are underway with a brokerage firm, which brings together several brokers ready to distribute the product. The offer will be offered through a system ofcancelable monthly subscription. “It’s a subscription method that is little known in Belgium, but which already exists in Spain,” explains Didier Muréna.
“A travel assistance agreement could only activate when the customer travels abroad.”
For the startup, the next step is to leverage blockchain technology in a much deeper way. One of the more interesting use cases of this technology is enabling the management of “smart contracts”, intelligent contracts. A smart contract can activate or take effect completely automatically. This could make it possible to plan adequate pricing based on the duration of the risk exposure.
“For example, a travel assistance contract could only be activated when the customer travels abroad,” explains Didier Muréna. Liability insurance for a bicycle messenger may come into effect automatically when the messenger gets on the bike. Same thing for ski-related insurance. “Blockchain technology is ideal for tackling this problem.“, assures Didier Muréna.
Swinz employs eight people in Belgium and works with 15 developers based in India.
- The start-up Swinz is developing a offer of insurance products for millennials. The offer is focused on liability insurance.
- The service is entirely managed by the decentralized technology of the blockchain.
- This technology offers a proof of authenticity for insurance contracts and an economical storage solution.
- In the future, this system will allowactivate automatically smart insurance contracts.