Business News: Davies Group, Marsh, Travelers and Hover, Purkeys

September 18, 2019
London-Based Davies Buys US Claims Shop

Davies Group, an international consulting firm based in London, has acquired Frontier Adjusters, a multi-line independent claims adjusting shop headquartered in Independence, Ohio. The purchase marks Davies’ first claims deal in the United States.

Frontier, founded in 1957, adjusts claims for all major property and casualty lines in all 50 states and parts of Canada through a network of franchised locations, Davies said in a press release. The company uses a proprietary multi-line claims management platform, FACTS, which enables end-to-end claims lifecycle management, including automated intelligent loss-intake, workflow management, integrated reporting and claim tracking, Davies said.

Davies said Frontier will form the independent adjusting arm of its new US Claims Solutions business. The adjusting division will join Davies’ existing businesses in the US, including a captive management business, Quest, and an insurance audit and inspection businesses.

Frontier Senior Vice President Milo Bolender will continue to lead the business with Vice President Tyson Ware, and the broader leadership team. All Frontier employees will continue in their roles as Davies’ employees, the company said.

The deal marks Davies’ fourth acquisition of 2019. Earlier this year, Canadian investor AIMCo took a minority stake in the group alongside majority shareholder HGGC to support Davies’ next phase of international expansion.

The company employs 2,000 and has partnerships with 500 businesses in the insurance industry and other highly regulated businesses from its operations in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Bermuda, the US and Canada.

Marsh Launches AI Platform for Workers’ Comp

Marsh says it has launched an enhanced analytics platform, dubbed Blue[i] Claims, that improves claims outcomes.

Blue[i] Claims uses anonymized benchmarking capabilities to identify clear, actionable cost-savings opportunities for clients, the New York City-based brokerage said in a press release.

Marsh said the platform will initially focus on US workers’ compensation risks, which cost employers nearly $100 billion annually. Clients will be able to implement solutions designed to get injured workers back to health and work, Marsh said. These can include:

  • Crafting targeted safety programs to reduce injury frequency.
  • Identifying complex claims early to enable prompt intervention and avoid adverse development.
  • Expediting the closeout of legacy claims to reduce balance sheet liabilities.
  • Improving collaboration with claims administrators.

Marsh said Blue[i] Claims is the first in a suite of analytics solutions that are being developed to use artificial intelligence and other advanced technologies to measure, manage, and minimize the cost of risk.

Travelers Using Hover to Assess Property Damage

The Travelers Cos. announced that it has expanded its use of Hover to assist in property damage assessments.

Hover, a San Francisco-based insurtech provider, transforms smart phone photos into 3-D models of buildings, gathering precise measurements of the building’s exterior, including doors and windows. The technology, profiled in June by the Claims Journal, speeds up damage assessments by eliminating hand measurements.

Travelers claim professionals can use Hover to easily inspect damages without the risks that come with climbing ladders, and policyholders can use the technology to submit their information without having to schedule an on-site inspection, Travelers said.

“Our focus is always on getting our customers’ lives back to normal as quickly as possible after a loss, and we’re continuously looking for new ways to enhance their experience with us,” said Nick Seminara, executive vice president of claim services at Travelers, in a prepared statement. “Using HOVER’s technology allows us to do just that — providing a faster and easier claim process for our customers and a safer environment for our employees.”

Travelers said it began a pilot program with Hover in November 2018. It has conducted more than 50,000 inspections with the technology for both its personal and business insurance customers.

Travelers said it has made other digital enhancements to its claim process, such as enabling live chat features, conducting video estimates and providing claim payment capabilities through services such as PayPal. The company also uses a fleet of drones to assess property damage, which expedites inspections, payments and repairs for its customers while helping to protect its claim professionals.

Device Turns Text Messages Into Voicemail

Purkeys has launched a product that turns text messages into voice messages that commercial truck drivers can hear over highway noise to receive information without violating federal regulations.

Purkeys, a Lowell, Arkansas business that sells technology products to trucking companies, said in a press release that Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations prohibit operators of commercial trucks and buses to read or send texts from hand-held devices. The company said its new Aware Audio Interrupter works around the rule by coverting text messages into spoken words. The device features a powerful solid-state amplifier that strengthens its voice quality and amplitude, helping messages to be heard more clearly, even over ambient highway noise, the company said.

The Aware Audio Interrupter is an audio interface management system that integrates with a vehicle’s existing speaker array. The Aware system automatically silences all competing audio signals and reroutes messages from mobile phones and telematics devices through the speakers safely, without the driver having to turn the radio on, turn the volume down or take a hand off the wheel, the company said.

With the Aware system, hearing messages in real time is simple and intuitive, allowing drivers to focus on the road, while remaining alert and able to respond to changes in driving conditions.

“The system relays clear, crisp audio messages that can be heard over the din of background cab noise – and it operates even when the radio is off,” stated Purkeys account representative Hall Fess.

The Aware Audio Interrupter allows drivers to nterface with their fleet’s telematics systems and get real-time communications updates from mobile phones and tablets while they are on the move, without having to stop and pull over to read written communications, the company said.

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