Vikas Chhariya Digital Partnerships

Hacking innovation and growth through strategic partnerships

Two years ago, Digital Partnerships team was incubated with a ‘fail-fast’ mindset to develop collaboration with strategic players. Key is to disrupt the marketplace and build scale with innovation that empowers customers in their everyday life moments. ALL ARTICLES  |  Innovation
Jun 28, 2017

The context

AXA set-up the Digital Partnerships team in 2015. Operating with a fail-fast mindset, the team was mandated to develop collaboration with disruptive digital players to address the evolving customer behaviours and emerging technology trends.

Today, the customer has come to expect an ambient interaction where boundaries between the channels fade, offer simplicity and transparency and finally fairness and value for money. These market changes are having a profound impact on the insurance value chain. In this new normal of accelerating change, strategic partnerships resets the traditional industry paradigm for innovation and growth. It also serves as an ongoing catalyst for AXA’s digital transformation through rapid deployment of new businesses and operating models.

The focus of these partnerships has been to develop solutions for users of collaborative economy, pure e-commerce platforms, social networks, connected ecosystems and insurtech among others, with the aim to proactively empower customers in their everyday life moments. These solutions are be-spoke and are provided to customers in an embedded manner or otherwise. Key examples of strategic partnerships include Blablacar, Uber, Alibaba, Jumia, Kasko, Trov and Facebook Messenger.

Strategic rationale

AXA clearly recognizes that disruptive players are creating new marketplaces. Insurance, and collaboration with AXA in particular, serves as a strategic growth lever for digital players to build massive communities. These communities are the new markets of tomorrow which will enable AXA to maintain its leadership by building new products and services, diversifying customer base, developing alternative distribution and strengthening world class digital capabilities and culture.

Today, the team plays the essential role of rainmaker in the marketplace – from scouting, origination, negotiation, implementation and ongoing business development. The execution of these partnerships also helps drive internal change management - gradually organizing the digital community around key objectives and strategy. As a result, globally and locally, AXA has become increasingly sophisticated in developing strategic partnerships and established itself as a legitimate actor in the digital and sharing economy.

Tangible results

Today AXA is the partner of choice for leading platforms in the mobility space. The partnership with BlaBlaCar has empowered approximately 45 million ride sharing members by providing itemized and bespoke AXA insurance solutions. The expanding partnership with Uber will provide protection to drivers and passengers on approximately 100 million rides in 2017. Separately, in local markets, leading platforms such as OuiCar in France and SocialCar in Spain choose to work with AXA. Additionally, we are also expanding partnerships with Alibaba in China and Europe and Jumia in Africa to develop alternative distribution using e-commerce platforms. Finally, we are deploying Facebook Messenger to strengthen customer servicing in 10 key markets.

Tags: Innovation