2022, what a year

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Hello. Happy Friday. 
This is the last SøNws of the year. The snow is falling, and the mountains are calling my name. 
Plenty to get into, as always. 
Before I do, a few highlights from Sønr’s 2022. 
By far our biggest year to date. 

  • We’re now working with dozens of the biggest names in insurance. From Asia to the US. And we’re absolutely loving it. Hopefully, they are, too 🙂
  • The team has doubled in size, as has our revenues (well more than double but hey, who likes a show-off?) 
  • 2023 is set to be HUGE

Insurance is moving fast. We help you move faster. 
Drop me a note if you’d like to know how we do it.  
It’s game on for 2023. That’s for sure. 

Right, let’s dive in. 
Climate driven innovation
So ESG is definitely set to be a hot topic of ’23. No doubt. 

And it’s great to see some of the new business models gaining traction.  
Vitesse, Yokahu, and Floodflash have teamed up to protect climate-vulnerable communities following extreme weather events. 

The collaboration will accelerate payments from insurers to policyholders and, hopefully, prevent SMEs from going bust following extreme weather events. Love it. 

On a side note, I hear Yokahu did a great job presenting at Lloyd’s Lab Demo Day this week. Congrats to them. They also announced they’re fundraising (in case you hadn’t clocked that one already). 
In fact, keeping with fundraising, Claims Carbon secured $1.1m in a Seed round which will be used to help insurers reach net zero in their value chain. 

Founded in 2021, the company has built software that helps calculate an insurer’s climate challenge and in turn, target setting. The new funds will be used to expand products and geographies to calculate an insurer’s climate footprint and, in turn, set reduction targets that can deliver carbon-aware insurance solutions.
Further afield, off the back of a $27m Series B extension, Igloo is exploring introducing their blockchain-backed parametric insurance to farmers in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand.

Typhoons and other extreme weather events are not only hurting the livelihood of farmers but also reshaping communities as younger generations head towards better, more reliable paying jobs.  
We talk a lot about the direct value of insurance. It’s easy to forget the indirect.
Africa. The new frontier for insurance?
With an insurance penetration of just 2.78%, you can’t help but feel excitement for what’s to come for Africa. 
A few weeks back, during the Cop27 climate talks, 85 African insurers pledged to provide financing of $14bn to support communities impacted by climate change. 
Further to that, I saw that Swiss Re is putting in $500k as a grant to spur innovation of Africa-based insurance solutions for the underserved. 

And AXA Mansard has launched the Innovation Exchange Program designed to help insurtechs to build, grow and scale their solutions. 
The land of Mercedes taxis
A couple of weeks back, I was in Munich and jumped in an Uber. I’m not mad into cars, but I got picked up by an electric S-Class Merc, and my God it was nice. 
I’m not sure quite how the finances stacked up for the Uber driver but hey 🤷
Anyway, what reminded me of that is seeing Allianz expanding its partnership with E.On

It plans to offer commercial customers in Germany a charging solution for their EVs. Which is very kind. The solution also includes various bundles and products that customers will be able to put together. 
In other news, Ford and Pie Insurance have come together to launch a new commercial vehicle product. 
Nothing too radical on this one other than the good ol’ fashioned benefits of housing finance and insurance options in one place. Good to see Pie continuing its crazy growth.
A random round up
There’s definitely a point on a Friday afternoon where I’ve spent too much time on client calls and need to wrap up this writing malarkey. 
And now is that point. 
So, a quick roundup of other stuff you may have missed elsewhere. 
Intelligent AI has secured $2.4m in Seed funding. 

Launched in 2020, it helps insurers to accurately predict risk on commercial properties. The money is set to further develop its underwriting platform and expand beyond the UK and the US.  
Out in Asia, Foodpanda has teamed up with PolicyStreet to digitise insurance for thousands of its delivery partners. 
As part of the collaboration, gig workers will be able to monitor their insurance coverage status and submit claims. Nice. 
And Down Under, Australia’s Butter Insurance has taken their first step by securing a $1.3m pre-Seed. 

The company aims to ‘democratise access to insurance’ by offering subscription-style policies at checkout. Think ‘AppleCare meets Afterpay, ‘ allowing users to pay for their insurance on a monthly or yearly basis.

Before I go, a few client shout outs. 
Big love to Generali for inviting us over to Paris to talk about future trends. And great to catch up with Wakam whilst over there. Sadly, I didn’t get to go but I’m sure Matt F was fully bereted up.  
Also loved seeing another of the team out in the Netherlands talking at EY’s Eye on Insurance and Banking. Sounded like another great event. 

Sønr trends presentations spanning ESG to the Metaverse. Love it. 
Also, a huge congrats to all those startups presenting at Lloyd’s Lab’s Demo Day this week. 
Nine successful projects in the ten weeks. Including four that secured capacity in that time. 
Not a bad output, right? It just shows the continued strength of that programme and it’s very special to be involved. Congrats to all involved. There is no rest for the Lloyd’s Lab team though, applications for the next cohort open on Monday.

And whilst we’re talking labs, one you’ll be seeing a whole load more of:

This is a six-month incubator programme that selects a number of leading startups and plugs them into the Connecticut academic and insurance scene. This latest cohort is focused on the aging population – from retirement to health. Do check it out. They’ve a star-studded cast of founders and advisors. And it’s another great programme Sønr is proudly supporting.
And finally, some awards. 
Great to see Em, our Head of Research, flying the flag for Sønr at the Insurance Times awards last night. Hope she manages to catch up on some sleep this weekend

And last but not least congrats to all those involved in TDI Digital Insurance Awards. Yesterday was the global finale. 
Insurer Innovation went to AIA
Insurer Transformation went to…yup, AIA
And Insurtech Innovation to bolttech

Now surely it’s time to wrap this up. 
To all our clients, thank you for a wonderful year. 
To the Sønr team, a big thanks and love. 
And to all our partners, industry friends and the crazy number of people who read SøNws religiously, a very Happy Christmas to you all. 
Drop me a line if you’re interested in working together next year.
Here’s to a cracking 2023 all round.

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