Is talent the silver lining in Covid-19?

With so many lives taken so early, and others immeasurably impacted, both with health and loss of work, what could be the silver lining?  Almost 1 in 4 Americans (36M) who had a job in February have filed for government assistance since mid-March.  There are estimates that COVID-19 insurance claims could top $200B globally.  To put that in perspective, the entire US P&C surplus in 2019 was about $800B.

For me, as I’ve been having conversations with carriers and agencies, it has become evident that traditional players are adapting to our current situation, perhaps even better than the insurtech competitors and enablers.  So, what opportunity does this bring?  It brings the potential for a carrier or agency to attract amazing talent.  Many of these affected workers would relish the opportunity to work for a stable employer.

Last month, Coverager published a table of Insurtechs that have begun laying off people.  It focused on the more established insurtechs.  The number totaled about 300 people impacted.  The basic message was that they needed to preserve cash because their market evaporated.

I expanded on their list and have included other companies that I know carriers’ partner with (see Table 1).  By no means is the list exhaustive, and right now it identifies about 1,000 people who have unfortunately lost their jobs in companies that have some insurance bend.  If you expand this to any fintech or even VC-funded start-up, the number is much higher.

The amount of VC money raised didn’t shield the startup.  You could have raised over a $1.3 Billion like Oscar who just announced layoffs of 5% of their workforce, or you were Jetty who raised $40M and laid off 25% of your workforce.  There is one bright spot – Ensurem who is expecting to more than double their workforce as the company moved to work from home.


The Talent Opportunity

Many of these affected workers understand insurance and have the technical skills necessary to help a carrier or agency digitally adapt and transform.  Layoffs have cut across all areas of the business: product, service, underwriting, customer experience, IT, engineering, data analytics, and many more.  This could be a once in a lifetime chance to help the technology transformation in your organizations.

Here are a few resources to help find some of the impacted employees:

If you know of other sites, or people looking for work.  Please have them reach out to me, as I am more than willing to pass their names on to other organizations.

Best of luck continuing to meet the needs of your insureds, agents, and employees.

Stay safe!


Table 1:  A sample of Insurtechs/Start-ups who have laid off people because of Covid-19

Name What they do  Employees Impacted Percent Raised
Datarobot Datarobot provides a platform for automated machine learning and AI. 1,100 200 18% $431M
Clover Health Clover is a health care insurer that focuses on  Medicare Advantage. 560 140 25% $975M
Metromile Metromile offers pay as you drive insurance as well as a white label claims management system. 303 100 33% $293M
Newfront Insurance  They are a risk manager and broker that has rethought their business using technology and enhanced processes. 250 90 36%
Domo Domo provides a cloud-based BI and analytics system. 900 90 10% $690M
Oscar Oscar is a digital-first health insurance company. 1,400 70 5% $1300M
Bold Penguin Bold Penguin has created an online commercial insurance exchange for independent agents. 150 40 26% $51M
Nauto Nauto is an AI-technology company that’s improving the safety of commercial fleets with an IoT device. 188 40 21% $174M
Enigma Technologies Enigma provides alternative small business data. 85 34 40% $130M
Jetty Jetty sells rental insurance to tenants and acts as a guarantor on leases in exchange for 5 percent to 10 percent of the annual rent. 75 30 40% $40.5M
Slice Labs Slice provides a technology platform to deploy on-demand insurance products.  They also market their products. 85 28 33% $36M
Trov Trov provides the technology needed to launch on-demand insurance products. 79 26 33% $114M
Blink Health Blink Health created an online way to get and manage prescriptions. 236 25 11% $165M
Ladder Life Ladder has reinvented life insurance to offer instant, fully underwritten term policies online. 52 13 25% $94M
Pillar Technologies An IoT firm that makes sensors for construction projects allowing for real time risk management. 16 $3M
Heap  Heap offers a smarter way to build digital products.  Esurance is 1 client. 186 $95M
Risksense Risksense provides full spectrum cyber risk-based vulnerability management 112 $24M
Snapsheet Snapsheet provides and end-to-end, cloud-native claims management platform that leverages technology to allow for remote capture of information. 305 $66M
Ensurem Ensurem sells Medicare supplement insurance by enhancing the sales process with technology.  ~50 80 $14M
(Sourced from web searches and


About Insurtech Advisors

Insurtech Advisors is dedicated to helping regional insurance carriers plan for the future today.  We help you identify and partner with Insurtechs.  This enables you to thrive and continue to meet the needs of your members, employees, and independent agents.