Q&A with Gareth at InShare SMART Risk

We learn more about how the business is disrupting the insurance industry with plans to provide bespoke, effective and efficient insurance schemes to companies across all industries.

Q: Can you tell us a little about your business?

A: InShare Smart Risk creates cost effective and efficient insurance schemes for groups of companies and consumers/individuals as well as large group companies. Within our unique and proprietary digital ecosystem, commercial entities can join together as Risk Sharing Communities to share, manage, reduce and transfer risk. While it encompasses insurance with an equal or better level of cover to the wider marketplace, InShare SMART Risk offers a considerably more comprehensive proposition that focuses more holistically on mitigating business risks and reducing their frequency and severity.

When you consider that some small to medium enterprises can spend up to and beyond 10% of their revenue on insurance and still not be adequately protected, it tells me that there’s a real opportunity to make the whole system work smarter. And that’s why we have created InShare SMART Risk, to provide cover and risk management tools that are best-in-class, cost-effective and efficient.

Q: How does InShare SMART Risk stand out from the crowd?

A: When it comes to risk, most businesses will do the basics: They comply with legal requirements by putting minimal health and safety systems and so on in place, and then they buy insurance and settle on this, believing that they are covered for all eventualities. However, having worked in the Insurance sector my whole career, my experience has shown me that this is unfortunately rarely the case – many companies are incredibly exposed. InShare helps businesses to overcome this exposure and become more resilient, whilst at the same time guaranteeing best-in-class protection for if, or when, things do go wrong.

Another distinguishing factor is that each community is totally bespoke: whether it’s a housing association, a group of sky diving schools, or a collective of yacht owners, the community platform is structured specifically around prevalent risks for their particular business sector. The members of each community own their platform and they decide how to manage and distribute funds.

Q: What are your business goals for the next 6-12 months?

A: InShare SMART Risk has progressed significantly in recent months, and much of this is as a result of the excellent advice and guidance we have received from the Catalyst team during the pilot scheme in 2019. Being accepted onto the 2020/21 programme is an exciting prospect for us, as it provides an additional check for us to reaffirm we are on track. Our ambition to provide effective and efficient insurance schemes to companies across all industries, means we need to constantly assess our communication and general strategy. The diverse cohort in the Catalyst programme helps us to better understand the nuances that exist in varied sectors and evolve our messaging accordingly. Our hope is these tools will prove useful as we accelerate both our technological and business development plans.

Q: What are you looking forward to from the programme, particularly as an already-established business?

A: Although I had a pretty good grasp of the business we were creating, the big take-away for me is the importance of focusing on the key elements of our proposition and its immediate deliverables when in front of a potential investor or customer, rather than any longer-term vision.

The mix of businesses at Catalyst is incredibly interesting and there are no shrinking violets! Everyone that is involved is happy to speak up, give perspectives and get involved, and I find it really refreshing that we all have the licence to do so.

Q: How do you think the Somerset Catalyst programme will help your business?

A: The Catalyst workshops have already changed my attitude from ‘what should I say in a 40-minute presentation?’ to ‘what do I need to get across in a 5-minute conversation?’. Crystalising our message and articulating our vision in this way has already been so important in getting us to where we are now, and it’s had a really positive impact on our management approach too.

Q: Why do you think Somerset is such a great place to do business?

A: One of the identifying factors of InShare SMART Risk is that we are a digital first company. Our team is based all over the UK, and we interact as regularly in the virtual world as the physical. However, I have found that there is an excellent network of professional and insightful individuals in Somerset, not least those involved in the Catalyst programme. It is the quality of the people we are able to work with here that makes Somerset such a great place to do business – everyone has been very willing to share their time and knowledge and it is a much more open culture than I have experienced elsewhere in the UK.