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Bitesize InsurTech: Wall Street Docs

This week, something (mainly) for our life insurance readers.

A new set of European rules are creeping up on financial institutions that sell packaged retail and insurance-based investment products (PRIIPs). They will require banks and insurers in Europe to send complex Key Information Documents (KIDs) to all their customers, detailing information specifically related to the product and client in question.

The regulation had been due to come into force by 1 January 2017 but in last month, the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee voted to delay the launch…although not indefinitely.

The product and compliance teams within banks in Europe had been working flat out to meet the 1 January deadline, and are continuing to prepare.  Their efforts may provide some useful lessons for insurance firms in the region, who we understand are a little further behind in their preparation.

WallStreetDocs allows financial institutions to create these complex, dynamic documents.  Its software can automatically combine firms’ product and market data (e.g. stock prices) to produce fully-compliant KIDs documents for each end-customer.

Here are some things that Wall Street Docs do which get them their banking clients – all relevant for insurers who may need to invest in this space:

  • Their team is much more than just techies – it includes product, regulation and legal experts. This means they have the know-how to run all the required risk calculation models and produce compliant documentation;
  • Their technology allows them to provide these documents in 18 languages, removing the need to have multiple vendors in different geographies;
  • They offer a monitoring service to continually review the end-customer risk data to check when a revised KID needs to be sent out.

We know what you’re thinking  – ‘this is not sexy stuff’ – and you’re right.

In fact the WallStreetDocs team would agree. But as Mathias Strasser, CEO, points out: when the rules come into force, if you’re not compliant, you won’t be able to sell any products.

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Greg Brown

Partner at Oxbow Partners
Greg Brown is a partner at Oxbow Partners and leads on digital proposition and technology design and build projects. Prior to founding Oxbow Partners, Greg was Head of Strategy and Propositions at Monitise, a fintech company. Reach him at gbrown@oxbowpartners.co.uk.

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