Late last week, Chad Nitschke, chief executive officer of InsurTech Bunker, a contract-related insurance marketplace he co-founded in 2016, announced that he is passing the CEO reins to Jordan Simkin.
“I’m a firm believer in ‘re-potting the plant’…, injecting new perspectives and creating room for growth. Over the past year, [Simkin has] not only been a trusted partner to work alongside, but he’s also become a close friend,” Nitschke wrote in an article published on Bunker’s website and a LinkedIn post, which also revealed that Simkin has joined the company in October 2020.
Nitschke said the two men share a similar vision and that Simkin’s background in founding and operating several successful Internet and software businesses make him a good fit “for the next stage at Bunker, which is profitable growth.” Although the announcement did not reveal Simkin’s prior successes, his LinkedIn profile lists a role as a venture partner at VIVE Venture Capital as a recent position.
Bunker describes itself as “the leading InsurTech providing instant business insurance solutions and compliance monitoring for independent workers, small businesses and enterprises,” and Nitschke wrote an exclusive article for Carrier Management in in early 2017 describing his journey from the traditional insurance industry to become CEO of an InsurTech. (“Confessions of a Recovering Underwriter and InsurTech Founder“) In the article, he explained that building an InsurTech isn’t as easy as media reports suggest, instead taking dogmatic stubbornness and drive to turn a vision into reality. He also wrote about the importance of testing prototypes with customers and learning to understand the language of investors.
Announcing the leadership transition, Nitschke, who said he will continue to support Bunker as an active board member, advisor, and shareholder, reflected on the journey again—starting with a mission “to embed smarter insurance into a native process—managing certificates of insurance,” and finding ways to iterate, pivot and improve during the first five years of the InsurTech’s existence.
“While we have similarities to our early vision of the business in 2016, over the past year in particular we’ve focused on our SaaS and API certificate of insurance compliance platform,” he wrote.
“It’s much easier on paper than it is in practice, and the team deserves all of the credit on being resilient; listening to customers, relentlessly iterating, and overcoming the daunting challenges that come in building something from scratch,” he wrote.