The Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative (B3i) announced it has expanded with 23 new brokers and re/insurers entrants, which will help with B3i’s upcoming market testing program.

B3i’s new entrants are: AIA, AIG, Aon, Chubb, Covéa, Everest Re, Gen Re, Guy Carpenter & Marsh, JLT Re, Leadway Assurance, LocalTapiola, Mapfre Re, Navigators, PartnerRe, QBE Re, SAHAM Assurance, Sava Re, Takaful Emarat, TigerRisk, Trust Re, UnipolSai and Willis Re.

This move follows “the successful launch of a working market testing prototype” at the Monte Carlo Rendez-Vous de Septembre conference on Sept. 10, said a comment from B3i, which was launched in October 2016 to explore the potential use of distributed ledger technology.

“I am very pleased to welcome 23 new companies to B3i,” said Paul Meeusen of B3i. “In less than a year, B3i has become truly global, both in terms of the work we are undertaking and the companies we represent. We look forward to working with the new entrants who will take part in our market testing and to learning from each other’s expertise and experience.”

Market testing of the prototype will commence this month, following onboarding and the provision of training to all member companies, said B3i. Each participating company will simulate the creation and management of property-catastrophe insurance contracts in order to test post-placement processes. This will apply from the setting up of the contract, through to the automated calculation for payment of claims.

The testing companies will provide feedback based upon their experiences using the platform, thereby contributing to the development of a viable production platform for the re/insurance industry by the second half of 2018.

B3i said it will also embark on developing and prototyping further use cases during 2018 for market adoption. This will be done by leveraging the collective views of the expanded membership to prioritize projects that extend beyond the current P/C reinsurance horizon.

At the beginning of 2018, B3i will put in place a new structure designed to better serve its members and future platform users. This will take the form of a limited liability company structure, with a research and development function and commercial operations. Further details about this will be published before the end of the year.

“At Willis Re, we are constantly exploring new ways to improve efficiency and reduce costs across the entire reinsurance value chain,” said James Vickers, chairman, Willis Re International. “We are delighted to support B3i’s initiative to take advantage of blockchain technology to develop news ways to interact with all parties involved in the reinsurance value chain. I am excited to see how this important initiative can transition from a successful prototype proof of concept to widespread practical application.”

The Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative is a collaboration of insurers and reinsurers formed to explore the potential of using distributed ledger technologies within the industry for the benefit of all stakeholders in the value chain. The 15 initial members of B3i are Achmea, Aegon, Ageas, Allianz, Generali, Hannover Re, Liberty Mutual Insurance, Munich Re, RGA, SCOR, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance, Swiss Re, Tokio Marine Holdings, XL Catlin and Zurich Insurance Group.

Source: B3i