[THE INVESTOR] Korean insurtech startup Zikto said on June 1 it has signed a memorandum of understanding with AXA Direct Korea, an affiliate of French insurance giant AXA Group, to jointly develop more customized insurance products based on blockchain technology.
Zikto will provide application programming interface, or API, and its digital coin Insureum to be used on the platform, while AXA will be responsible for the development, marketing and sales of insurance products. Their first collaboration products are expected to debut later this year.
Zikto co-founder Ted Kim (left) and AXA Direct Korea CEO Gilles Fromageot pose after signing a memorandum of understanding in Seoul on June 1.
Zikto recently raised 20 billion won (US$18.67 million) through its initial coin offering with aims to develop the blockchain-based Insureum Protocol platform that connects insurers, consumers and third-party solution developers to trade insurance-related data more easily but securely.
The firm said its new decentralized platform, the first of its kind globally, will help reshape the insurance industry that has faced hurdles for innovation due to technological limitations and the conservative nature of the sector.
“AXA is one of the most innovative insurance firms with higher understanding of blockchain technology,” Zikto co-founder and CEO Ted Kim said. “Starting with AXA, we aim to team up with several insurance firms and launch insurance products that better meet customer needs.”
Zikto, established in 2014, is best known for its Zikto Walk wearable device and multiple-device data integration platform The Challenge. The firm has been venturing into the burgeoning insurtech market, launching the Insureum coin in April. Its ICO sold out during the private sale phase to institutional investors last month.
US cryptocurrency security firm BitGo CEO Will O’Brien and Lee Chan-woo, professor of Kookmin University and former CIO at National Pension Service, the nation’s largest institutional investor, have joined the firm’s 13-member advisory board to offer management consultations.
By Lee Ji-yoon (firstname.lastname@example.org)