Behind the Investment: Groundspeed – Unlocking Unstructured Commercial Insurance Data
While the property and casualty (P&C) insurance industry has begun a digital transformation over the past decade, much of the market continues to operate manually via emails and disparate PDF and Excel files. Sitting in these emails and files are rich unstructured data. Every commercial carrier, reinsurer and broker knows the importance of this data yet are left helpless without the tools to extract value from this unstructured data at scale.
We first met Jeff Mason, founder and CEO of Groundspeed Analytics, in 2018. It was immediately clear that Jeff had a deep passion to work with unstructured insurance data. The tech industry at large constantly was referring to “data as the new oil” and Jeff recognized that one of the largest industries in the world, P&C insurance, had a gold mine of data that was largely untouched. He spoke about loss run reports, a type of form generated by carriers to detail the claim history on an insurance policy. These forms, which may sound simple in theory, are quite complex. For an insurance policy covering thousands of vehicles in a commercial fleet, a loss run report can be a few hundred-pages long. Taking the complexity one level further, there is little to no standardization across loss run reports. Every carrier has loss run reports in a variety of formats, not only creating inefficiencies for the carrier, but for their broker partners. This problem does not stop with loss run reports. Exposure schedules, policies, and submissions all suffer from the same complexities. We quickly recognized the magnitude of the problem and technical difficulty involved in solving it.
Over the subsequent years, Groundspeed continued to mature with the support of leading fintech investor Oak HC/FT, landing some of the largest P&C carriers, reinsurers and brokers in the world. We met with Jeff a few more times – in Las Vegas at Insurtech Connect, in Ann Arbor (Groundspeed’s HQ) and lastly in New York right before the onset of COVID-19. With each conversation, we became more and more compelled by Jeff’s vision. We spent hours speaking with industry experts, systems integrators, solution partners and potential customers. The feedback was strikingly consistent – large carriers, reinsurers and brokers were experiencing the same problem and using off-shore teams, in-house technologies, or Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) firms to create efficiencies. Yet, many of these solutions are far from efficient. It was apparent that if Groundspeed could crack this massive problem, the reward would be equally enormous.
We were fortunate to spend time with Jeff and the rest of the Groundspeed team to better understand their technology and “secret sauce.” It was clear that the platform was architected in a way to truly scale with customers across lines of business and form types, unlocking a unique dataset that would play a massive role in supporting current and future customers. Coupled with quantifiable ROI – lower headcount, better underwriting, and premium growth – we were convinced Groundspeed’s offering was a no brainer for the P&C industry.
Today, we are excited to announce that we are leading Groundspeed’s Series C, alongside existing investor Oak HC/FT. We see an immense opportunity ahead for the business to continue cementing themselves as a category leader and we look forward to supporting them along their journey.