South Korea’s Ministry of Science is building a consortium of top industry players and development talent to create the tools needed for revolutionizing the insurance industry. BusinessKorea reported last week that the team is led by Kim Wook, senior managing director of digital innovation at Kyobo Life, the largest insurance provider in South Korea. The company will work with other consortium members: D. Lemon, an insurance technology firm; The Loop, a blockchain startup; and One, whose expertise is hospital medical records. These companies will lay a foundation for the development, integration, and implementation of blockchain insurtech trials.
Kyobo Life has more than 5 million customers in South Korea, a 60-year track record, and governmental backing, making it a natural entity for rolling out blockchain initiatives. SK Telecom’s LoRaWAN IoT network, which was deployed last year, is likely to interoperate with systems under design by the consortium panel.
The formation of the development panel is the latest indication the South Korean government remains committed to leveraging technological advancements across industries. The fundamentals behind these new technologies will capitalize on efficiencies intrinsic to blockchain technology. Those efficiencies will prove themselves in the insurance industry through the form of automatic payments that run on top of LoRaWAN IoT authentication technologies.
Currently, anyone who holds an insurance policy must provide a plethora of documents to their carrier to receive payouts. The process is often criticized as being unnecessarily bureaucratic. By using blockchain platforms such as Ethereum, policyholders can have their identities verified automatically while medical fees and payouts are rendered at time of service.
“This is the first case where the insurance industry is fully connected with fintech and introduces a new service” Kim Wook told Business Korea. “If the service is commercialized in the future, we will be able to provide a better service by utilizing various fintech technologies.”
This latest development shows that South Korea continues to be a leader in blockchain implementation. The nation’s commitment to emerging technologies is sure to allow it to reap the rewards of the fourth Industrial Revolution.