Levitan Sharon law firm have decided to join the network of law firms that assist the Israeli High-Tech Industry with a specific spotlight on Insurance.
However, it seems like the experience with the Israeli Insurtech Startups, shows that they mostly would like to operate outside Israel, with the intention of building their company and making an exit.
INSURTECH ISRAEL NEWS magazine joined ADV. Tammy Greenberg, ADV. Oded Cederboim, and ADV. Sharon Shefer – partners at Levitan Sharon law firm, to a conversation in the matter.
What can Levitan Sharon Law firm do to assist and where do you see your firm integrate into the industry’s needs?
Greenberg: Levitan Sharon law firm, specializes in Insurance and Reinsurance. We have vast knowledge and understanding of the needs of the insurance market on the one hand, the requirements of the Reinsurance market, the regulations in Israel relating to insurance entities, and therefore have a very important perspective for high tech companies that would like to offer products that can be adapted to the insurance market, companies that intend to act as players in the Israeli insurance market such as digital insurance companies.
During the last few years, we assisted two Israeli digital companies building up special insurance policies, getting approval from the regulators and checking their reinsurance programs. We are also involved in other types of entities acting in the insurance market, such as M.G.A.s.
This specific knowledge is not just limited to Israel. We are recently joining forces with one of the largest law firms that specializes in insurance, Clyde & Co., which has offices in 50 locations around the world. Clyde is operating in the Insurtech world in the US (from its NY office) in Europe (from its German and London offices) and in Asia.
Clyde also has offices in United Arab Emirates (Dubai) which may be in the future a place wherefrom investors interested in Insurtech companies will emerge.
What exactly can you offer to Insurtech startups?
Cederboim: I was involved in many aspects of legal services that the firm rendered to digital insurance companies that operate in Israel.
I attended the recent exhibition of the Insurtech Industry that took place in London in mid-March, as well as in the reception hosted by Clyde in London for the Israeli Insurtech startups (which are part of Kobi Bendelak’s Accelerator) the reception included some investors as well as people from the insurance industry.
From my conversation with some of the Israeli Insurtech companies I realized that there may be a need for a “translator” who will be able to explain about the intended product of the startup to the insurance industry. Although it seems that we are speaking in the same language, the reality, like in any specific professional industry, is that the perception and the understanding of certain elements is different.
When visiting the exhibition I was approached by two startups which asked if I can put them together with Clyde’s people, who are well connected to the worldwide insurance industry. In order to enable Clyde to assist them (to introduce their product to the insurance companies), I requested more clarification, obviously in Hebrew. After we sat together and I received a full explanation what is the capability of their proposed product, I realized that the potential users of such products, are not insurance companies but rather insurance brokers, I then referred the guys to the correct person in Clyde, that can assist.
In the second case after I received an explanation of the high tech companies re what their product intends to do, I realized that their product may be of interest to underwriters of insurance companies which have specific expertise in agricultural cultivation, agricultural insurance/insurance.
After I was able to understand exactly where the intended product would fit, I was able to direct them to the exact person at Clyde and Co., who deals with the potential customers or these products.
What will be your contribution?
Sharon Shefer: I joined Oded both in the reception and the meetings at the exhibition.
I can see the contribution that joining forces between Levitan Sharon and Clyde can bring to already built up companies or MGAs. Due to the fact that both law firms are specialized in the insurance industry, as well known and respected by Insurers and Reinsurers around the world, we can assist companies that already exist in the Insurtech world, to get an answer to their needs more efficient and in many cases less costly than when they seek the assistance of law firms which are a big “supermarket”, whereby insurance is not their main activity.
I see my place as the facilitator for the medium sized and large sized companies which already raised substantial capital, already decided what is their direction, and believe that their way in the insurance industry is already paved. Together with Clyde we can assist in opening new territories, such as Europe and Asia.
It is very important to understand that we do not intend to compete with capital market law firms. However, both law firms strong position in the insurance industry can enable in many cases to cross barriers. We see a specific added value that we can bring to MGAs who seek to act in the US and around the world. We don’t just know the regulations but we can also assist in receiving licenses in a speedy manner.