Coseke, Eimad teams win ZEP-RE’s “TechMeetInsurance” hackathon

ZEP-RE (PTA Reinsurance Company) recently hosted a two-day  insuretech hackathon dubbed “TechMeetInsurance” at the firm’s offices in Nairobi, Kenya, in a bid to automate their internal claims system.

The hackathon featured four teams of young innovators namely, Code Samurai, Coseke, Eimad and Miyabi as they competed for a cash prize of Kshs 100,000 and a chance to work with the ZEP-RE IT team in trying to make their prototype into an actual product for the insurance industry.

(TOP: Coseke team members pose with their dummy cheque for US $1,000 – Kshs 100,000 – prize money after being crowned winners of the TechMeetInsurance hackathon hosted by ZEP-RE. Image: Alan Gathuru on Twitter).   

At the eventful hackathon that earned the Coseke team the top prize, Eimad emerged the runners up taking home Ksh. 50,000.

There are many systems out there that handle claim management. The hackathon teams therefore needed to research on such systems prior to the hackathon day and use that as background to their solution. The key components that were assessed included:

–       Ease of use of the system and flexibility to handle changing insurer needs

–       Tracking of claims status

–        Security of data in storage and in transit

–       Integration capability to re-insurer

“The purpose of this hackathon was to build an online system to manage claims interaction between insurance companies and re-insurer to ease the claims management process. In line with our mandate to actively participate in the development of the insurance industry, we  aim to achieve thought leadership in Insuretech. This hackathon is one of the activities to develop awareness among our ICT companies on the need to develop solutions for the insurance industry,” said, Ronald Kasapatu, Operations Director, ZEP-RE.

ZEP-RE, CIO, Alexio Manyonde, said that a major aim of the hackathon was to bring the young innovators together with other industry players in a bid to foster interactions and thus promote the culture of using technology within the industry.

“We decided to do a hackathon because we have a mandate to develop the insurance industry. In that breath we, thought it would be a good idea to get insurance companies and insurance students to work on this problem and be able to come up with a solution that would help the industry,” said Manyonde. “We are hoping to get a prototype of a solution we can then be able to use. The product should be able to link the broker, the claimant and the re-insurer,” he added.

ZEP-RE intends for the system to act as an integration point between the re-insurer and insurer. It will allow capture claim information and upload of supporting documents in format best suited to the insurer, and translate to formats needed by re-insurer. It should be able to handle claim notification and settlement advice, as well as different types of claims. It will receive claim status information from the re-insurer system and make it available to the insurer for tracking purposes. For the first phase direct integration will only be to ZEP-RE, while other re-insurers will receive notification of claim in line with their participation on that business.

ZEP-RE is a regional organisation charged with the task of promoting trade, development and integration within the COMESA region through trade of insurance and reinsurance business. ZEP-RE was created by an Agreement of Heads of State and Government of the COMESA region on November 21, 1990 in Mbabane, Swaziland.

The firm has been in operation since 1993 and is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya. ZEP-RE also operates regional offices in Harare, Zimbabwe; Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire; Douala, Cameroon; Lusaka, Zambia and a Retakaful Window in Khartoum, Sudan.

ZEP-RE’s operational activities are driven by the desire to provide excellent technical services to all our clients and to actively participate in and support the development of the region’s insurance and reinsurance industry.


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