The Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative (B3i) founders have formed a startup to offer insurance solutions on a blockchain platform that improves efficiency across the value chain of the re/insurance industry.

The company was formed by the founders of B3i which include Achmea, Aegon, Ageas, Allianz, Generali, Hannover Re, Liberty Mutual, Munich Re, SCOR, Swiss Re, Tokio Marine, XL Catlin, and Zurich Insurance Group.

B3i has been a collaborative initiative of 15 insurance and reinsurance companies which came together in 2016 explore the potential of blockchain in the insurance industry.

B3i says that it has completed its first product, a blockchain prototype for property cat XoL reinsurance contracts last year. Throughout last year, a group of 38 insurers, brokers and reinsurers tested its functionality and robustness.

The prototype showed that transactions could become quicker, more efficient and more secure compared to the current methods. The first live trades on the platform are expected to begin by the end of this year. Several other products are also being developed simultaneously, B3i noted.

B3i Services will raise additional funds from several insurance industry participants in the coming months. It stated that it will create an ecosystem of products and services developed the motto, ‘by the market, for the market’. Details about investment opportunities will be issued in the coming weeks.

Swiss Re Reinsurance chief financial officer Gerhard Lohmann has been appointed as chairman of the company. He said: "The transition of B3i from consortium to independent company is a concrete step forward to realizing the enormous potential of blockchain for the insurance industry.

“Personally, I am very excited to be at the forefront of this innovation that has the capability to transform the industry and help make insurance more affordable, accessible and attractive for market segments that are currently disenfranchised, or underprivileged."

B3i Services’ executive management team members include Paul Meeusen, Fei Zhang, Sylvain De Crom, Markus Tradt and Ken Marke.

Image: B3i incorporated as new company in Switzerland. Photo: Courtesy of Allianz.