Asian insurtech M&A surges

April 11 2018 by InsuranceAsia News Staff

The transaction volume of insurtech M&A in Asia hit US$460 million in 2017, more than three times that of 2016, according to an insurtech report published by Willis Towers Watson and Willis Re, in collaboration with CB Insights.

China and India accounted for a significant 73% of transactions in 2017. Hong Kong, Singapore and other Asia markets continued to build on the momentum from 2016 and accounted for 27% of the transactions, representing a much more conspicuous contribution than in 2015 when they only amounted to 4% of the regional sum.

“Investments have picked up especially in the areas of artificial intelligence, automation, process enhancement and customer engagement as companies hope to drive further efficiencies in business operations,” says Vincent Lien, head of Willis Towers Watson Securities, Asia Pacific. “Insurtech certainly plays a significant role in those areas via the use of data and analytics. They are still to reach prominence across Asia Pacific, so the opportunities are huge.”

The increase in deal activities in Asia helped drive global insurtech transactions to a record high in 2017. In the fourth quarter alone, insurers and reinsurers made 35 private technology investments globally, pushing the yearly total to 120, the highest numbers recorded respectively in any quarter or year.

In terms of the actual volume, US$697 million of insurtech funding in the last quarter rounded off 2017, which saw a total of US$2.3 billion, up 36% from 2016, and marked the second highest total for any year to date.