Fujitsu launches STP service for insurance industry

Fujitsu Australia today announced the launch of a Web-based straight through processing (STP) service for the Australia and New Zealand insurance market. Fujitsu will leverage technology from UK-based Vertex Financial Services (formerly Marlborough Stirling), a provider of outsourced services and technology solutions, whose customers include Royal Liver and Lloyds. With this new initiative, Fujitsu aims to significantly reduce the cost of processing a life insurance case in the $25 billion insurance market.

Fujitsu will host and manage the service, which is based on Vertex's lifecycle STP platform, partnering with Munich Reinsurance and utilizing Munich Reinsurance's underwriting rules. The service can cover all facets of protection policies from quote, through online underwriting to claim.

By automating the application process using the Fujitsu service, the company claims insurers can not only reduce the cost of processing a protection case, they can also reduce the time it takes to process an application down to 48 hours in most cases.

Fujitsu Australia CEO Rod Vawdrey said the expenses for insurers associated with providing protection continues to escalate while the industry is plagued with a shortage of underwriters and the need to get new business on their books faster.

He said this new service will provide the insurance industry with a mechanism to improve efficiency in the back office and to cut costs.

Fujitsu will provide a hosted STP service for insurers, which will be supported by outsourced underwriting and tele-underwriting from Otter Risk Solutions, Vertex's third-party underwriting and claims risk management subsidiary. The service also enables insurance companies to 're-badge' their protection products and open new channels of distribution such as banks and credit unions.

Munich Reinsurance business manager Matthew Pilcher said Vertex's STP platform uses a combination of business rules and underwriting rules to process applications. "While straight through processing has been around for many years, the reality is that few insurance companies are able to process online business 'straight through' from quotation to back office," according to Andy Hunt, Vertex Financial Services managing director.

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