AmTrust Financial Services, which is in a bid to take itself private, is linking up with a number of Israeli technology startups to help modernize its customer and agent interactions.

The New York-based multinational property/casualty insurer said it formed the partnerships through its AmTrust Innovation arm, which recently established a local presence in Israel with a mission on finding, partnering with and investing in companies that will both improve and automate customer and agent interaction. Technology goals also include streamlining insurance business processes such as underwriting, claims and payments.

Why Israel? The country is considered a hub for new InsurTech and other technology development, and the insurer made its partnership announcements at the OurCrowd Global Investor Summit in Jerusalem.

AmTrust’s partnerships are with two local Israeli firms: and Verishow. There’s also a new relationship with SparkBeyond, a firm with offices in New York and Israel.

Here’s a breakdown of what AmTrust hopes to obtain from each company:

  • SparkBeyond. AmTrust said it hopes to improve its quoting and binding process using the company’s artificial intelligence-powered research engine, which can find complex patterns in data to create actionable business and process recommendations.
  • The startup’s chatbot product will help support AmTrust’s customer service representatives. Plans also call for using the technology to improve service times and communications between customers and AmTrust’s billing, payments and policy administration platforms.
  • Verishow. AmTrust executives want to use this company’s technology to give its agents and customer service representatives video chat capabilities including co-browsing, document interaction and certified e-signature capabilities.

Recently, AmTrust also launched its new TapSafe smart-connected warranty app that lets consumers automatically find, spot and protect all of their connected devices including phones, tablets, smart home hubs, wearables and more.

AmTrust Chairman and CEO Barry Zyskind, director George Karfunkel and Stone Point Capital Partners announced a proposal in January that would take AmTrust private. Right now, the Karfunkel-Zyskind family owns or controls about 43 percent of outstanding shares of AmTrust common stock. The bid is designed, in part, to help the carrier “focus on the long term without the emphasis on short-term results,” according to the announcement of the proposed bid.

Source: AmTrust Financial Services Inc.