Innovating Insurance: Recap of HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Demo Day

May 17, 2024

We are proud to have successfully delivered the HackZone Scale Up Acceleration Program on 15 May 2024 at JustWork in Istanbul. The Demo Day was an exciting event for all our partners and audiences. While the Demo Day was a fantastic stage where we observed the value created by Hackquarters by Tenity and Allianz with all our partners, seeing the results of our Hackzone programs encourages us to nourish the insurtech ecosystem further. In addition, the event provided a platform for startups to present the innovative solutions they developed over the six-month accelerator program. Each startup had the opportunity to highlight their progress, technological advancements, and the impact of their solutions on the insurance industry.  

The HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Program, a collaborative initiative between Allianz Türkiye and Hackquarters by Tenity, is designed to empower startups in the insurance sector. Over six months, the program provides participating startups with the resources, mentorship, and network necessary to scale their business models and develop innovative solutions for the industry. This year's cohort focused on leveraging cutting-edge technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), gamification, and climate change solutions.

The HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Program has made significant strides in fostering innovation in the insurance industry since 2020. Over this period, the program has screened 461 startups, selecting 38 from a pipeline of 66 promising startups. With a total investment surpassing 7.28 million dollars, HackZone has focused on diverse areas of technological advancement. Notably, 165 startups addressed climate change, 71 explored various other fields, 60 concentrated on open innovation, and 46 developed digital health solutions. Additionally, 45 startups leveraged artificial intelligence and machine learning, 36 enhanced customer loyalty and user experience, 30 provided on-demand insurance solutions for new mobility ecosystems, and 8 integrated gamification technologies. This comprehensive approach underscores HackZone's commitment to revolutionizing the insurance sector and driving sustainable growth through cutting-edge technology.

Sabina Babayeva, Istanbul Hub Lead at Hackquarters by Tenity, opened the event by welcoming all attendees and expressing her excitement about the progress made by the startups over the past six months. She emphasized the importance of innovation in the Insurtech and how the HackZone program has fostered cutting-edge solutions. Sabina also highlighted the collaborative spirit of the program, thanking Allianz Türkiye and all partners for their unwavering support.

Onur Kırcı, CMO of Allianz Türkiye followed with a speech that underscored Allianz Türkiye's commitment to driving innovation through strategic startup partnerships. He highlighted how the HackZone Scale Up Accelerator aligns with Allianz's vision of leveraging technology to enhance customer experiences and tackle global challenges such as climate change. Onur commended the startups for their hard work and ingenuity, and he expressed optimism about the future collaborations that would emerge from Demo Day.

Hümeyra Boztunç, Innovation Manager of Allianz Türkiye, provided an in-depth overview of the HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Program. She outlined the program's structure, which included intensive mentorship, access to Allianz APIs, and a series of workshops and training sessions designed to accelerate the startup's growth. Hümeyra highlighted the program's focus areas: Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), gamification, and climate change solutions. She also shared impressive statistics on the program's impact, including the number of startups that have successfully scaled their solutions and entered new markets through Allianz's global network. Hümeyra concluded by expressing her pride in the startups' achievements and her excitement for the future of Insurtech innovation.

Leadership at the Forefront: Driving Insurtech Innovation

The keynote panel, titled "Leadership at the Forefront: Driving Insurtech Innovation," featured a dynamic discussion among top executives: Evren Ayorak, CIO of Allianz Türkiye, and Kaan Toker, COO of Allianz Türkiye. Moderated by Sabina Babayeva, the panel delved into the critical role of leadership in steering technological advancements and operational strategies within the insurance sector. The conversation focused on how integrating IT and operations can drive significant innovation and set new standards in Insurtech.

Evren Ayorak discussed the transformative impact of IT on the insurance industry. He highlighted how emerging technologies, such as AI and ML, are being integrated into Allianz's operations to enhance efficiency, improve customer experiences, and develop new products. Evren emphasized the importance of a robust IT infrastructure in supporting innovative initiatives and adapting to the rapidly changing technological landscape.

Kaan Toker provided insights from an operational perspective, explaining how Allianz Türkiye aligns its operational strategies with technological innovations to drive growth and competitiveness. He discussed the importance of agility and collaboration between different departments to implement innovative solutions effectively. Kaan also shared examples of how operational processes have been optimized through digital transformation initiatives, resulting in improved service delivery and customer satisfaction.

Transforming Concepts into Services: New-gen Insurtech

The following panel discussion, "Transforming Concepts into Services: New-gen Insurtech," focused on the journey from innovative ideas to practical, market-ready solutions.

Representatives from Orbina AI and Zuzzuu and Hümeyra Boztunç, Innovation Manager of Allianz Türkiye, Hüseyin Namlı, Data Science Manager & AI Lead of Allianz Türkiye and Karan Tugay Gönenç, Customer Value Management & Transformation Team Manager of Allianz Türkiye discussed how startups and corporate teams collaborated to integrate innovative technologies into existing frameworks. They highlighted successful Proof of Concept (PoC) processes that transformed theoretical concepts into viable products and services.

  • Operational Synergy: The panel emphasized the importance of synergy between different operational units within Allianz and the startups. This collaboration ensured that the solutions met technological standards and aligned with business goals and customer needs.
  • Scalability: Discussion points included strategies for scaling these solutions beyond initial pilots, leveraging Allianz's global network to reach new markets and customer segments. The panelists shared insights into overcoming challenges related to scalability and adaptation in different regulatory environments.

Innovative Strategies for Addressing Climate Change in Insurance

Led by Gizem Severoğlu Tigin, Program Manager at Hackquarters by Tenity, this panel featured key contributors from Forest Guard, 3pmetrics, and Allianz Türkiye. It focused on sustainable and innovative approaches to climate change within the insurance industry.

  • Early Detection and Prevention: Suat Batuhan Esirger, Co-founder of Forest Guard explained how their product for early fire detection can significantly reduce environmental damage and associated insurance claims. This technology not only aids in risk management but also supports Allianz's sustainability goals.
  • Sustainability Metrics: Cemil Alpay Sünnetci, Co-founder of 3pmetrics highlighted the importance of accurate ESG metrics in shaping sustainable insurance practices. By providing real-time data on carbon and water footprints, 3pmetrics enables insurers and clients to track and improve their environmental impact.
  • Corporate Responsibility: Representatives from Allianz, including Nilay Çakır, Environmental Climate Change Manager at Allianz Teknik, and Dr. Ceyhun Eren, Director of Allianz Teknik & Risk Engineering, discussed how the integration of these innovative strategies aligns with Allianz's broader commitment to sustainability. They emphasized the role of insurance companies in driving environmental stewardship and supporting global climate goals through advanced risk management and proactive measures.

Beyond Insurance: Creating Value Through Customer Insights

The final panel, moderated by Bedirhan Turan Durmuş, Innovation & Customer Loyalty Expert at Allianz Türkiye, explored the creation of additional value through deep understanding of customer behavior and preferences.

  • Data-Driven Decisions: Speakers from Novus and Pivony shared how their AI-powered platforms provide insurers with comprehensive insights into customer needs and behaviors. By analyzing customer interactions and feedback, these solutions help insurers tailor their products and services more effectively.
  • Strategic Implementation: Allianz Türkiye representatives, including Mustafa Altay, Product and Service Design Chapter Lead at Allianz Türkiye, and Bircan Ergür Çağlayan, Digital Product Owner at Allianz Türkiye, provided examples of how these insights are being implemented within Allianz's operations. They discussed the importance of a customer-centric approach in developing new products and refining existing ones to better meet market demands.

Here are the selected startups:

3pmetrics: It simplifies carbon and water footprint accounting, along with ESG analysis, through its user-friendly SaaS platform and API services. The 3pmetrics Sustainability Gateway empowers companies to autonomously manage ESG metrics for the entire value chain in just one day.

ForestGuard | Kozalak: Early detection and warningin open air fires, providing Air Quality Measurement, Toxic, Flammable, and Explosive Gas Detection.

Novus: It specializes in data-driven generative AI and on-premise Large Language Model (LLM) services, focusing on empowering enterprises with comprehensive multi-agent AI workflows. Novus's mission is to harness the transformative power of AI, overcoming challenges faced by businesses in integrating and effectively utilizing AI technology.

Orbina AI: It is an artificial intelligence assistant specially developed for individuals and institutions, automating creative content production while enabling it. By reducing the media and content needs of small and medium-sized companies by 40%, Orbina takes company efficiency to a new level.

Pivony: B2B SaaS Platform for business professionals to understand ever-evolving customer expectations in just a few clicks.

Zuzzuu: One simple platform for Revenue Growth, a hub for AI-powered work: Customer Journeys, Goals, Clubs, Campaigns, Games, and more.

If you are interested and want to meet with our startups, please reach us at gizem.severoglu@tenity.com and we will schedule a quick call as soon as possible.

IN A NUTSHELL

The collaborative efforts between the startups and Allianz Türkiye demonstrated the power of partnership in driving the next generation of Insurtech solutions forward. By integrating cutting-edge technologies and operational strategies, the HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Program sets new standards for innovation in the insurance sector.

Visit the HackZone website for more information about the HackZone Scale Up Accelerator Program and to stay updated on future initiatives. Let's continue to innovate and collaborate for a brighter, more sustainable future in insurance!

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