Canadian Underwriter

Opta acquires getClarity: linking property and risk data with consumer profiles

February 14, 2019   by David Gambrill

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With its recent acquisition of getClarity, Opta Information Intelligence is expanding into the area of customer and prospect behaviour.

Opta is Canada’s largest property data aggregator and a provider of risk intelligence and loss control services. Its solutions include iClarify (commercial and residential property data), Fire Underwriters Survey (which provides fire insurance grades), and Inspection Score (which shows which risks are in most need of inspection).

“The addition of getClarity behavioural profiling data further complements our existing underwriting solutions and the value that we can deliver to our customers in the ongoing digital transformation of the industry,” Greg McCutcheon, president of Opta, said of the acquisition, the terms of which were not disclosed. “We now have the capability to not only provide industry best property data, but we can also help you understand who lives inside and what their purchasing habits are.”

Co-founded by Greg Purdy and Shaun Donnelly, along with Marc Rivait, chief data architect, getClarity is a data innovation company that uses data developed from multiple sources to provide a holistic view of customer and prospect behaviour. The company has developed 44 unique customer profiles to describe the people and communities across Canada ranging from “Executive on the Move,” to “Outdoor Adventurer,” to “Soccer Parent.”

Each profile provides demographic information including insights on purchasing behavior, acquisition activity, and social media preference, among other things.

Opta now has access to consumer profiles that provide insight into the kinds of vehicles and homes people own, plus their digital activities. “Examples of this include how long people spend on social media, streaming movies, popular sites, all assigned to the profiles. This is updated monthly using up to 10 terabytes of digital data daily,” Opta noted.

The next step is to attach getClarity’s consumer profiles to Opta’s property information. getClarity has profiled 12.5 million households across the country. The pairing of the human and property data would allow brokers and carriers to have a complete view not only of the insured properties and risks, but also the policyholders and the steps they take to mitigate their risks.

“As the insurance industry continues to evolve in this digital age, we recognized that we could expand and enhance our transformative solutions by joining the Opta team,” said Purdy. “We’re thrilled by this opportunity and access to Opta’s center of excellence for innovation.”

The Canadian property and casualty insurance industry is increasingly aware of human behaviour economics, a trend whereby companies such as Netflix and Amazon have proven that understanding customer preferences is a successful business capability.

Opta says its acquisition of getClarify will position the organization as a partner to brokers and carriers that face competition from insurtechs in the field of behavioural data.

“Strategically this [acquisition of getClarity] will allow [Opta] to introduce solutions that support carriers as they look to compete with new digitally oriented companies like Lemonade,” Opta said in a statement to Canadian Underwriter, when asked about the strategy driving the deal.

“The industry is changing, the focus is shifting from traditional underwriting variables to data captured by our phones and other devices that provide powerful insights to our shopping behaviours, values, and stage of life journeys. The demand for solutions that can address these needs is driving the world of insurtech. Opta is now positioned to drive innovation in these areas.”

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