Speed is one of the qualities used to measure a successful knowledge transfer. Quick solutions and staying one step ahead of the competition is the name of the game. Hannover Re searches systematically for new business opportunities in order to generate sustainable growth over the medium to long term and strengthen the company’s profitable development. With a view to identifying opportunities and successfully translating ideas into business, Hannover Re adopts a number of closely related approaches in order to achieve holistic opportunity and risk management. Of significance here is the interplay without overlaps of the various functions within opportunity and risk management, which is ensured by defined interfaces.
Major elements in Hannover Re’s business opportunity management include its various market-specific innovations in the Life & Health and Property & Casualty reinsurance business groups. Trends are systematically detected and analysed with the support of external sources and partners and the needs of our customers are anticipated along the entire insurance- related value chain. Targeted consideration is given to new business opportunities that promise access to innovative technologies and enhanced appeal in the eyes of our customers. With this in mind, Hannover Re cultivates partnerships with relevant accelerators, incubators, company builders, start-ups and research institutes in order to boost the company’s competitiveness in the insurtech sector and in the field of digital solutions. Competence teams have been set up within the Hannover Re Group to assess the strategic significance of innovative new digital technologies. Not only that, Hannover Re has set up an organisational unit that provides specific support for insurtechs in the development of their digital business models and devises reinsurance solutions to this end, thereby also generating new premium potential for Hannover Re.
Hannover Re has developed a structured innovation process for the in-house generation of ideas in order to benefit more from the wealth of innovative creativity among its employees. This process is embedded in the “Hannover Re Intrapreneurship Programme”, which encourages all members of staff worldwide to contribute ideas for reducing costs or increasing premium. In the course of a 13-week incubator programme selected ideas are developed by employees in an external innovation ecosystem. Project participants are released to the incubator from their line function in order to elaborate on their ideas as quickly as possible in a highly focused environment.
The networking of the innovative minds involved in these activities gives rise to close links with other projects, working groups and bodies, such as with the working group on “Emerging Risks und Scientific Affairs” in regard to emerging risks and opportunities. This working group carries out qualitative assessments of emerging risks. As a result, however, not only are the potential risks explored but also any available business opportunities. In the year under review, for example, issues such as “Microplastics” and “Medical advances” were analysed by the working group.
If a business idea is translated into reality and a new reinsurance product results, the normal procedure – provided the criteria defined for this purpose by Risk Management are applicable – is to work through the so-called new product process. This process is supported by Risk Management at Hannover Re. The process is always worked through if a contractual commitment is to be entered into in a form not previously used by Hannover Re or if a new type of risk is to be insured. If this is the case, all material internal and external influencing factors are examined beforehand by Risk Management (e.g. implications for the overall risk profile or the risk strategy) and evaluated. Risk Management ensures that before it can be used or sold a new reinsurance product must be approved by the Executive Board.