Hover Gaining Ground as Underwriting, Adjusting Tool

By Jim Sams | June 26, 2019

After securing $87 million from investors in three funding rounds, the insurtech startup Hover is hitting its stride in the customer-acquisition phase.

The San Francisco-based firm this month announced deals with two independent adjusting companies. Executive Vice President Kevin Reilley said Hover counts among its customers six of the top 10 property and casualty carriers.

Hover’s technology uses ground-level photographs of structures to build three dimensional models that can be used for both claims and underwriting purposes.

“This data set is a data set that the carriers have been looking for for years; a data set that can be put in the cloud for both underwriting and claims,” Reilley said during an interview Wednesday.

Hover is a smart phone app that uses artificial intelligence to convert data from a series of photographs, taken of each corner and face of a structure, to build three-dimensional models complete with measurements.

Reilley said both contractors and claims adjusters can use Hover to estimate replacements costs. He said the system is far more accurate than photo-based estimates, which may miss details like damaged gutters and facia.

Hover can also be used beyond the initial estimate. Reilley said policyholders can use the images created by Hover to create conceptual drawings of their homes. The program allows homeowners to experiment with design and finishes. Homeowners can even worth with the claims adjusters to make changes.

“Hover is allowing for the first time this deep interaction between the homeowner and insurance company,” Reilley said.

For insurance underwriters: “They are kind of creating a proprietary 3D view of every policy they have, a digital reconstruction of that property that is fully-scaled and interactive.”

On Wednesday, Hover announced that it has teamed up with Pacesetter Claims Service, a national independent adjusting firm based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Earlier this month, Hover announced a similar partnership with U.S. Adjusting Services, also a national firm based in Irving, Texas. Fourseventy Claim Management Partners, an adjusting shop based in Woodway, Texas, teamed up with Hover in September 2018.

Hover got its start in 2012 as a provider of three-dimensional maps that it hoped to build through crowd-sourced images from mobile phones, according to a report by Time Magazine. The chief executive officer of the company, A.J. Altman, was former Marine intelligence officer who build 3D images for military applications.

In October 2015, Hover announced the launch of smart phone app that it marketed for the home renovation industry. Shortly after that, the company announced the first of three funding rounds. GV, formerly Google Ventures, and Home Depot were among the investors in a second funding round. In April, Hover announced a third funding round, announcing a total investment of $87 million.

The company has honed its marketing message over the years, saying now that it is “on a mission to create a single source of truth for the physical world.”

Hover said in April that it had doubled the size of its staff in the past eight months.

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