The Lloyd’s chief commercial officer told DWIC delegates that the ecosystem business model was the way forward

Vincent Vandendael today urged the insurance industry to evolve or die in the face of technological change.

Speaking at this year’s Dubai World Insurance Congress (DWIC), Lloyd’s chief commercial officer Vincent Vandendael compared the insurance industry to other industries that had faced change and said lessons should be learned.

“History is littered with industries that failed to adapt and got left behind,” he said. “the question is what do we do as an industry to not become one of them.”

He highlighted that while innovation was seen as a facilitator for the industry, it was a double-edged sword - more data means good news for the customer as it will lead to lower premiums for customers, but it could prove a threat to the industry due to the impact that would have on insurers’ profits.

Vandendael also spoke to the near 600 delegates at this year’s DWIC about the Lloyd’s view of emerging risk and opportunity during his DWIC keynote, pointing out that the key was to get ahead of the evolving innovations.

“Data is the new oil, but while we have deep wells, do we know how to access it and how to use it,” he added.

According to Vandendael, “as much as 25% of profit could be at risk” if digital distribution methods were not adopted.

Vandendael outlined that while new technology was being adopted by the industry – including bloockhain, drones and augmented reality – the adoption was too slow.

He asserted: “It’s not an option to carry on in a business as usual way. We need to change our mindsets when it comes to business models.”

He noted that the different elements of the industry’s value chain needed to start thinking of themselves as part of interconnected ecosystems that cater for the clients needs in a holistic way.

Vandendael stressed that the ecosystem model was the way the world is heading.