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Zurich ends agreement with Blue Zebra

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Blue Zebra is exploring opportunities with South African owned insurer Youi, after Zurich announced it will cease providing security for the underwriting agency.

Zurich says today the current agreement will end on March 16, citing Blue Zebra’s performance as one reason for the split.

Blue Zebra launched in 2018, aiming to bring personal lines back to brokers and using smart technology to increase efficiency.

It has grown rapidly, with more than 100,000 policyholders and writing $110 million in premium over the last year. As has reported, it is now looking to move into SME, cyber, and commercial motor, and is considering expanding overseas.

“With Blue Zebra now looking to expand its offering into a wider range of products, we each needed to reassess the agreement,” Zurich CEO General Insurance Tim Plant said.

“This also comes at a time when Blue Zebra’s performance is not aligned with Zurich’s expectations, and after careful consideration we both agreed it was best to end the agreement.

“Importantly we will continue to manage our obligations with customers who purchased insurance products using the Blue Zebra platform.”

Zurich declined to provide further details about which aspects of Blue Zebra’s performance did not meet its expectations.

Blue Zebra MD Colin Fagen told that “they would’ve liked a better loss ratio,” but says the relationship with Zurich remains strong.

The agency says it is working exclusively with Youi “to explore the opportunity to be Blue Zebra’s new underwriting partner for personal lines and SME business”.

“Subject to negotiations and reaching agreement, Blue Zebra intends to have an arrangement in place with Youi for all personal lines policies incepting from March 17, 2020,” Blue Zebra said in a statement.

“Zurich will continue to be the security for any current or future new business quotes that will incept up to and including March 16.

“Our products will continue to be available via our Zebra Lounge platform, which is now accessed by more than 1000 users every day.

“We are proud of our achievements to date and thank our broker partners for their support in growing one of the world’s insurtech success stories.

“We are excited by the upcoming launch of new products and features in 2020 as we continue to evolve our offering.”