Business and Technology Trends: Specialty Lines


May 2021 – To enable rapid entry into profitable niches, specialty insurers are differentiating themselves in a competitive marketplace through investments in distribution (especially new business submission), product development, underwriting, and claims.

This report provides an overview of specialty insurers’ business and technology issues, data about the marketplace, and about 20 examples of recent technology investments by specialty insurers.


  • Recent market and financial trends
  • Active insurer landscape
  • Technology issues, priorities, and examples by functional area
  • Top technology priorities for 2021 and beyond

Key Points and Findings

Insurers are pursuing long-term data strategies. Specialty insurers are prioritizing reporting tools and investing in data science capabilities to optimize their portfolios and improve underwriting. Ingesting unstructured text is a newer area of focus, leveraging AI, ML, and NLP.

Improved underwriting and product development flexibility are key considerations. Insurers are upgrading to highly configurable policy administration systems to improve underwriting and enable product development flexibility to accelerate entry to profitable niches.

Specialty insurers are investigating automation support for ingesting new business application documents and building out broker platforms. Digital broker platforms and API catalogs are also assisting in automation.

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