B3i unveils reinsurance blockchain prototype in Monte Carlo
The Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative – an insurance industry project launched last year to explore the potential use of distributed ledger technology – has formally unveiled a working prototype of a blockchain-powered reinsurance transaction platform.
The unveiling came over the weekend during an insurance industry event held every September in Monte Carlo since 1957, known as the Rendez-Vous de Septembre. The “RVS” event continues through Wednesday at the Hotel Fairmont Monte-Carlo.
Since last year, the Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative, also known as B3i, has grown to 15 members from its original five.
According to press statements released by a number of the insurance companies participating in the B3i project, blockchain technology is seen as offering considerable potential for enabling insurance companies to execute contracts and transactions among multiple parties in a secure, transparent and auditable way, while increasing productivity significantly.
The current 15 B3i members are Achmea, Aegon, Ageas, Allianz, Generali, Hannover Re, Liberty Mutual, Munich Re, RGA, SCOR, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance, Swiss Re, Tokio Marine Holdings, XL Catlin and Zurich.
In a statement posted on the website of SCOR, a Paris-based, Euronext-listed reinsurance company, B3i’s Paul Meeusen noted that the working prototype on show in Monaco had been in the works “over the past four months”, and that the “deployment architecture” was “already close to a production-ready environment”, ahead of a planned first deployment into production next year.
According to the statement, existing B3i members and new partcipants will be able to take part in a “market beta-testing programme of the prototype, beginning next month, as part of which they will be given access to a “sandbox environment” designed to simulate the creation and settlement of contracts.
All participants in the programme will also gain access to B3i user group workshops until the end of 2017, the statement adds.
Valter Trevisani, group chief insurance officer of Generali, the Italian insurance giant, noted that blockchain represented “an innovative technology” that would both “transform the economic system” as well as “significantly chang[ing] the insurance market”.
Added Paolo Robotta, also of the Generali Group: “Creating value for our customers by focusing on innovation is a must.”