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CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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NTUC Income Insurance Co-operative garners SBR Technology Excellence Award for Digital - Personal Insurance

Droplet, a pioneering insurance product, enables passengers to deal with surge pricing by private ride-hailing platforms on rainy days.

One important role of technology is to help consumers solve problems and simplify their lives, especially when inconvenient circumstances occur. Therefore, Singapore Business Review (SBR) acknowledges the achievements of companies that aim to fulfil this role through their ground-breaking products, services, or strategies. A worthy line-up of winners has been named in the SBR Technology Excellence Awards 2019 for the uniqueness and innovation, effectiveness and impact, and dynamism of their work.

As one of the biggest names in Singapore’s insurance industry, NTUC Income (Income) is constantly motivated to provide products that meet consumers’ changing needs. Recently, it has redefined the term “saving for a rainy day” by launching an insurance product for passengers affected by price surges on ride-hailing platforms when rain occurs. Droplet, Income’s first digital lifestyle insurance, uses rainfall and ride-hailing data to give consumers an insurance cover on days when there is surge pricing on ride-hailing platforms. The product was developed in four months with Digital Income’s IT infrastructure, following a two-month process of customer testing and validation. The team interviewed customers and developed suitable price points with real prospects to determine the acceptable price range for this new insurance product.

With its simplified claims pay-out through PayNow, Droplet embeds lifestyle insurance seamlessly into consumers’ daily lives, paying out 60% of the transport fare on ride-hailing platforms when it rains. By paying only a premium of $1–$9.60 a day depending on real-time rain forecasts, the insured can submit any number of ride receipts for claims, up to a maximum of $50 per day. To file an insurance claim, passengers can submit an e-claim by simply forwarding their ride receipts to claims@droplet.sg. Droplet covers all rides on Grab, GOJEK and Ryde.

Leveraging Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Technology, each receipt can be easily and quickly verified for rain at the time and location of the ride booking. Whilst the insured has up to seven days to make a claim from the day of the ride, a pay-out via PayNow can be expected within three calendar days from the day of a claim submission. This streamlined process allows the insurance company to reduce its operational costs.

To help consumers make informed decisions about purchasing Droplet, real-time weather forecast is made available at the point of purchase on the website, with premium pricing dynamically pegged to rain forecast.

This means Droplet premiums will vary according to when consumers purchase the “rainsurance.” Consumers who purchase Droplet closer to the days that forecast rain are likely to pay a higher premium compared to those who purchase the cover in advance. By offering dynamic premium pricing, consumers can plan for better protection against surge pricing due to rain whenever they hail a ride.

Peter Tay, Income’s chief operating officer, who heads the Digital Transformation Office (DTO), said, “Insurance is traditionally known as a means of protection from financial loss. It is primarily used to hedge against uncertain loss. Increasingly, we are taking inspiration from modern lifestyles and exploring opportunities where we can apply this principle of hedging to address consumers’ pain points via innovative insurance solutions. With something as ubiquitous as rain and surge pricing, Droplet is influencing the way in which consumers use and embed such an insurance in their daily lives. Droplet is resonating with customers as 20% of policy purchases are from return customers.”

“We are excited about Droplet not only because it marks endless possibilities in what we have defined as ‘lifestyle insurance’, but it has empowered us to transform the way consumers regard and engage insurance. We already foresee Droplet to go beyond a single insurance proposition but one that has potential for other interesting extensions. We are eager to bring to market more surprising insurance offerings that meaningfully play to consumers’ lifestyles and needs. We are reimagining insurance and redefining what it could be together with our consumers and that is truly exciting,” Tay added.

The Technology Excellence Awards, presented by Singapore Business Review, was held on 30 May 2019 at the Conrad Centennial Singapore.

This year’s nominations were judged by a panel consisting of Cheang Wai Keat, Head of Advisory, Ernst & Young LLP; Darwin Thio, Director, Cybersecurity & Technology Services, Nexia TS; Daryl Pereira, Head of Cybersecurity, KPMG; Evelyn Lim, Executive Director, Tax Advisory, BDO LLP; and Jonathan Kok, Co-Head of Technology, Media & Communications Industry Group, RHTLaw Taylor Wessing LLP.

Check out the event photos during the awards night here.

If you would like to join the 2020 awards and be acclaimed for your company’s exceptional technology innovations, please email Julie Anne Nuñez at julie@charltonmediamail.com

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