ISSUE #62 – In this interview, Leo Costes, Managing Director, General Insurance, AXA Insurance, and Ankur Agrawal, Head of AXA DIL@Asia, share with us about AXA’s efforts in data analytics and innovation.
AXA’s initiatives cover different insurance activities, from transport (AXA Pay-As-You-Grab) to Healthcare (My AXA Health mobile app). Is there a common approach that underscores these initiatives?
Leo Costes: The data revolution has indeed profoundly impacted the way we do business; with exciting new technologies, we are now able to process and analyse volumes of data previously too large to handle.
It is AXA’s firm belief that technology can be harnessed to make lives easier for both us and our customers and this is the principle that underscores our approach – innovating constantly to redefine standards and bring value to our increasingly IT-savvy customers. The combination of connectivity and data analytics enables us to pioneer digital insurance initiatives across different sectors of our business, allowing us to offer customers products and services they want and need.
Innovation has always been at the heart of AXA’s corporate culture and we are focused on remaining at the forefront of digital and technological developments.
How would you describe the relationship between the AXA DIL in Singapore and other labs / larger AXA group? What are AXA DIL’s key areas of focus here?
Costes: Innovation has always been at the heart of AXA’s corporate culture and we are focused on remaining at the forefront of digital and technological developments.
In order to unleash the true potential of technology, we do believe that we have to help create a strong innovation ecosystem through partnerships with start-ups or established industry players.
Ankur Agrawal: The Data Innovation Labs focus on accelerating our data science journeys. AXA DIL@Asia in Singapore and AXA Lab Asia in Shanghai are the two new structures created in 2015 to better connect the larger AXA group with the Asia region’s rapidly developing entrepreneurs, talents and new business models.
Modelled after the DIL in France, the AXA DIL@Asia is the first lab in South East Asia, and will act as a business-focused centre of expertise on data analytics to foster R&D for AXA’s offers and services.
Here, our key areas of focus include:
- Connected devices, with tremendous opportunities to change the way we connect with prospects, interact with customers, understand and prevent risk, and also develop valuable and innovative services for insurers;
- Predictive behaviour, which is about understanding our customer better to make our interactions more relevant, develop trust, and better anticipate and personalise our services;
- Risk Management Advanced Analytics, which aims at truly leveraging our industry’s specific “gold mine” of data.
With big data, we will be able to support the business by shifting traditional risk management to predictive underwriting.
What are some of the Lab’s key considerations when working with big data?
Agrawal: We believe in the transformational power of data. With big data, we will be able to support the business by shifting traditional risk management to predictive underwriting. Emerging technologies will enable us to collect and process data, support new services (telematics, connected home, connected health) and enhance interactions with our customers.
The data revolution comes with its share of new risks and constraints, where it concerns customers’ data: threats of malicious use, leakage or theft. Such risks call for thorough and strict information security policies and strong data governance.
We take a serious view on the protection of our customers’ data in strict accordance to Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA).
We were the first insurance company to adopt the Binding Corporate Rules, the global standards for the PDPA; we have taken a public position in our Data Privacy Declaration, published in June 2015, of not selling our customers’ data to third parties out of the Group; since July 2015, a Data Privacy Stakeholder Panel, composed of experts on data privacy, challenges and advises the management on privacy issue.
For us, data privacy is a competitive advantage and an important model of a sustainable innovation model.
AXA Insurance Singapore is a leading general insurer in Singapore offering a wide range of innovative property-casualty insurance solutions to both individuals and companies. AXA DIL@Asia is both an internal incubator and a centre of expertise on data tools and capabilities, leveraging on data to engineer creative solutions to support better living and stronger communities.
Interview with Leo Costes, Managing Director, General Insurance, AXA Insurance and Ankur Agrawal, Head of AXA DIL@Asia
Article published in the FOCUS Magazine “Driven by Data” — Issue #1 2017