Amazon is expected to confirm the fears of many in the insurance sector by bringing its scale and data to bear on distribution with a price comparison site, Reuters has reported.
Citing sources, the news wire said the online retail giant had been in talks with some of Europe’s top insurers to see if they would be willing to contribute products to a online platform.
Last year, the firm marked its intention to explore insurance opportunities in Europe when it posted a number of job ads for staff with knowledge of the sector.
News of a price comparison site is likely to shake up some executives in the sector who have for years feared that one of the tech giants could bring their vast warehouses of personal data and huge capital resources into the realm of underwriting.
A price comparison site, however, is likely to be a concern to few other than the likes of Compare The Market and MoneySuperMarket. Reuters said it was “not immediately clear” what type of insurance would be sold on the site, although it was expected to be personal lines cover such as auto and home policies.
Nevertheless it is likely to be seen as a statement of intent by some in the sector. One source said recently: “You don’t think that [Amazon and Google] if they find it lucrative won’t expand into other business lines.”
The underwriter said that Amazon and Google had already shaken up the US healthcare insurance market and that they were likely to do the same to the P&C sector in Europe.
However in 2016, Google launched a financial services comparison site in the UK but it shut down after only a year due to low traffic, Reuters reported.