7 min read

Zipia Is Helping Unlock Digital Insurance Sales in Brazil

Insurance agents have been a slow but effective distribution channel for insurance and financial products in Brazil, but the industry needs to adapt to changing times. 

Founder and CEO Pedro Yue.
Picture courtesy of Zipia

Roland Osborne

Principal

Published

08.09.21

The U.S. insurtech market has been hot for years and momentum is picking up globally. That includes Latin America, which has a growing ecosystem of companies innovating in insurance, especially as insurance sales surge in the wake of the pandemic. 

One market we’re particularly excited about is Brazil. The online insurance shopping experience is still broken in Brazil, with the industry needing to embrace digital channels and innovation. A company providing such solutions is insurtech platform Zipia. It unlocks digital sales channels by providing insurance agents in Brazil with the tools and solutions they need to reach and serve customers online at scale.

The Nuts & Bolts

Problem: Brokers and independent agents play an essential role in Brazil’s insurance industry, with insurance carriers relying on them to sell directly to consumers. These brokers and agents have been a slow but effective distribution channel for insurance and financial products in Brazil for decades, but the industry now needs to adapt to changing times. 

It’s still difficult for consumers to shop for insurance through digital channels, while brokers also struggle to serve consumers online in a scalable, cost-effective way. That’s because it can be costly and challenging to transition to digital sales channels without the right tools. 

Brokers can burn hundreds or thousands of dollars running campaigns on Google or Facebook to build sales leads without getting good results. Reaching customers is also only part of the problem: brokers need tools to manage and track the online sales process. There are agencies helping brokers conduct online campaigns in Brazil, but agents also need a customized insurtech customer relationship management (CRM) platform ​​to help navigate online sales. 

Solution: Zipia is helping digitize insurance sales in Brazil by connecting consumers to agents through its insurtech platform. Alongside facilitating sales, its CRM technology gives brokers the proper tools to manage product performance and remote teams. 

Agents using Zipia can expand their reach through a network of portals aimed at insurance shoppers, where customers can browse options, request quotes and get in touch with the right provider. Agents can then connect in real-time to customers and instantly access the customer info needed for the sale. 

Zipia’s platform is entirely web-based and is designed to be easy to implement: a sales rep just needs to log on and they’re ready to go. The result is a plug-and-play way for brokers to begin selling through digital channels at scale in a cost-effective manner. The company targets brokers of all sizes in Brazil. Currently, it primarily targets the auto insurance market, but also works with health insurance, life insurance, dental and more. 

Getting to know Zipia

Zipia’s team has a wealth of experience in digital marketing and insurance, alongside a strong understanding of Brazil’s market. 

CEO Pedro Yue previously served as a VP with digital performance marketing firm QuinStreet, where he saw the opportunity to start Zipia. QuinStreet, which works with insurance industry clients such as Geico and Progressive, found it difficult to navigate the Brazilian market because it was reliant on agents. It was clear local agents needed help with digital channels but weren’t finding proper solutions. That led to the development of Zipia, which was spun out of QuinStreet into a separate company in 2020. 

Pedro also worked at Bain & Company and has an MBA from Wharton. Zipia’s CTO Simon Birrell is a serial entrepreneur with experience in Brazil and Europe, including co-founding the startup Vemm, which QuinStreet acquired in 2015. He studied for a PhD in artificial intelligence and robotics from Cambridge. Then there’s Daniel Possa, Zipia’s VP of operations, who has years of experience in digital marketing in Brazil and also worked at QuinStreet.

Why now?

Zipia is pursuing a sizable opportunity to facilitate online insurance sales in a country with roughly 211 million people and an insurance sector that could triple its size in the coming years. At the same time, impressive e-commerce growth points to shifting consumer behavior, which should influence demand for online insurance shopping options. The industry is coming around, with the COVID-19 pandemic forcing Brazil’s insurance brokers to work remotely and begin shifting more to online sales, according to Pedro. 

Simultaneously, insurtech overall is enjoying high growth. North America is currently the largest contributor to the growing global insurtech market, but the overall market is growing at a rate of 34.4% annually and is expected to reach a value of $119 billion by 2027 globally.

The future of Zipia

Zipia is now in scale mode. Thousands of users access its portals every day and it has signed clients such as Porto Seguro, Youse, Bradesco, Minuto Seguros, Qualicorp, Vila Velha and others. It’s getting easier for Zipia to onboard agents, with the sales cycle now taking less than a week as they gain name recognition. 

Alongside signing up clients, Zipia is working to expand in segments beyond auto insurance, which includes moving into financial services. We’re excited to support Zipia’s journey as it continues to unlock insurtech possibilities in Brazil.

You can learn more about Zipia at: https://zipia.com.br/ 

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Roland Osborne

Principal

Roland is a Principal at 500 Global, where he brings deep knowledge in the mobility and customer service spaces as well as broad operational expertise. Roland is a three-time entrepreneur, previously having co-founded Olark Live Chat where he was VP of product. Prior to 500, he worked as an Entrepreneur in Residence in Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as Peru.

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