Insurtech Story: How DriveX Helps Insurers with AI-assisted Vehicle Verification
|Service description||vehicle self-inspection and instant information sharing with insurance and mobility companies|
|Problems to be solved||
and 5+ more to be announced
|The product is best suited for||
Many insurtech start-ups offer insurers, MGAs, and brokers the chance to avoid IT nightmares and integrate their modular technology hassle-free. One of the game changers is DriveX. They are innovating insurance and mobility industries with AI-assisted vehicle verification. By applying data-driven technologies to define and transfer information about vehicle features, e.g. visual defects, number plate, mileage, etc., DriveX creates transparency and minimises the risk of fraudulent verification. We had a chat with Rauno Sigur, CEO and Co-founder of DriveX, to find out what’s the secret sauce to their success.
Could you tell us about your background? How did it encourage you to found DriveX?
I was working at Cleveron where my responsibilities were business development and export. Through my contacts, I heard about the Porsche hackathon. It seemed like an exciting project and I put together a team of my friends to participate. We presented a cool idea of personalising driving experience and made it to the semi-final. But we thought, what’s next? As we started meeting with Estonian mobility companies and gathered feedback, we realised that one of their main problems was how to verify the vehicle’s condition before and after usage.
Actually, a personal story motivated us to act. While I was driving my Japanese partners to a business meeting at Cleveron, my car got hit in a parking lot. That messed up our entire day! I wanted to get my car fixed in the official dealership. I realised how much paperwork and bureaucracy it caused, how slow and archaic the process was, and how little information I had about its progress. I wondered if things are so confusing in Estonia, what could the situation be like in other countries? Starting from that, we focused on insurance companies and how to help them with quick and paperless vehicle verification. Today, our technology is empowering casco sales and we are beginning to improve efficiency in claims handling.
Please explain in the simplest way possible what does DriveX do? What problems are you solving?
Our solution enables you to self-inspect your car and instantly share this information with your insurance provider. Thanks to that, your casco policy will be activated much faster or your claims handling cycle will be shorter. The idea is that the quicker an insurance provider gets accurate information about the car, the faster the process will roll. Eventually, both end-users and insurers will win in time and money.
Our mission is to make insurance providers’ life easier by addressing problems like efficiency, risk management, and user experience. Insurers should recognise and assess risks accompanied by the lack or poor quality of vehicle photos. Accurate information enables to minimise risks and make aware decisions. It also boosts efficiency since the process is automated and doesn’t require employee intervention. Our solution is easy to integrate and use, so we deliver great user experience when it comes to pleasing a new generation of consumers with high expectations.
The insurance industry is known for its high entry barriers. How did you break these down?
I see three key factors affecting that: competence, continuity, and trust. Building trustworthy relationships with conservative insurance companies is a challenge. We’ve managed to overcome that by having a clearly stated vision and, on the other hand, carefully listening to the market’s needs. Success lies in fast and clever execution, and customers like our ability to perform. Our motto is “Innovate what matters”. Entry barriers are a true blessing in disguise, but once you have defeated them, it feels amazing!
What value do you create for your target industries: insurance and mobility-as-a-service sector?
The main value created by DriveX is the possibility to acquire reliable, high-quality information about the vehicle’s condition. Insurers can cut costs thanks to increased efficiency, but also mitigate the risk of fraudulent cases by making knowledgeable decisions based on accurate data. End-users will win in the speed and transparency of decision-making.
We deliver transparency and trust. To this day, obtaining, storing, and using trustworthy information about a vehicle’s condition at a certain point in time is complicated for insurance providers. For mobility companies, the challenge is to ensure customers’ peace of mind. With transparent and documented processes, they will know who and when damaged the car and innocent customers won’t suffer.
What makes your technology unique? Are you worried about competitors copying your concept?
The technology is special since it gives instant feedback to end-users after capturing the vehicle. Our system runs different verifications on the background, e.g. number plate and VIN code check, as well as verifying whether there is a car in the photo at all. Plus, additional proprietary checks. Ensuring photo quality is the most important asset since it guarantees that further decisions are made on the right basis and faster.
It is always possible to try to copy technology, but that’s more complicated than it sounds. Insurance companies have tried to solve similar challenges on their own, but they have either given up or asked for help, since it is not their core business. Our product becomes more complex in time, we rely on profound analysis and constant iterations. It’s a sequence of improvements - we have improved our technology based on continuous customer communication and feedback, and our roadmap is really ambitious.
How have you applied AI in your Smart Scan technology?
First of all, DriveX guides the user to take photos in a simple, yet standardised method. Only real-time images can be used. Having captured the vehicle, the photo will instantly be uploaded to the cloud where our system analyses its match to certain criteria. That’s what we call the AI and performing proprietary checks.
Our next target is to start identifying damages, e.g. distinguishing scratches or dents in the photo. The most important goal is to guarantee the photo quality – that the distance is correct, the vehicle is properly in frame, etc. In the future, we want to be able to identify the physical appearance of a vehicle, i.e. whether it’s covered in mud or snow. There is room for additional layers of complexity to raise accuracy.
Speaking of implementation, do insurers need to integrate your product into their systems? If so, how have you solved that difficult challenge?
Our goal is to offer the simplest integration and the easiest user experience on the market. Our technology is a module that can easily be integrated into existing systems. You can actually give it a go without having to integrate anything. You can just sign up and receive information, i.e. photos and reports, by e-mail.
The next stage is full integration between DriveX’s and the company’s system, where the information and photos are transferred automatically. This enables full automation and takes the need for human interference to a minimum. For example, insurers can connect a vehicle’s policy number with our scanning result and have correct photos and information updated in their database.
Insurance is an industry with long sales cycles. What’s your secret to closing good deals fast?
First, understanding the real value that we provide. Second, we act as consultants for insurers who want to become digital. I suppose that our strength is the ability to fully understand their business processes and goals. Since the industry is conservative, we think along with our customers on how to innovate step-by-step. Of course, having good relations with customers is paramount. We keep them in a constant communication loop about our plans and value their feedback. A substantial part of our journey is customer engagement in product development, which keeps them excited. Surprisingly for us, the power of word-of-mouth is strong, and our Estonian customers recommend us to their partners. I can’t thank them enough and say how much we appreciate it!
What’s your ambition in changing the industry? Where do you see DriveX in 3 or 5 years?
Our goal for 2021 is to enter new markets in Scandinavia, Central and Western Europe since our generic product is suitable for these markets. Regarding product development, the plan is to add extra layers, like photo quality verification or identification of damages, to create more value.
A future trend is insuring self-driving cars and I believe that vehicle data will shape the pricing models. In addition, car manufacturers are getting smarter and eventually cars will start transmitting driving-related information or accident details via cloud solutions. This long-term view is our mission – to provide comprehensive data about the vehicle to interested parties, either insurers or mobility service providers.
With solutions like DriveX, you can step up the game by increasing efficiency and speed in casco sales and claims handling, as well as by improving user experience. Instead of building software for addressing specific problems, you can integrate the technology that automatically delivers reliable and high-quality information about the vehicle. This fosters aware decision-making, better risk assessment, and decreases fraudulent cases and costs.
Soon Insly's customers can start using DriveX's integration for seamless vehicle verification. We will keep you posted on the updates!