The Future of Insurance Podcast – Hanna Wu

CEO & Co-Founder, Amplify Life Insurance

Season 3, Episode 22, November 1, 2022

Guest Bio

Hanna grew up in the life insurance industry as both her parents were life insurance agents. She founded a financial planning agency in 2014 focused on helping affluent families and businesses build tax efficient assets and protect their legacies. She and her team placed over $2B of life insurance coverage, mostly through life insurance wealth accumulation policies. In 2019, she and her cofounder started Amplify with the mission of building the first digital and customer-centric life insurance platform focused on helping customers build wealth and protect their families.

Highlights from the Show

    • Hanna grew up as the child of two life insurance agents, and started her own financial planning agency in 2014
    • She focused on helping clients think about life insurance as part of their financial or wealth planning picture, helping with retirement planning rather than just using it as a death benefit
    • In 2019, Hanna co-founded Amplify with a recognition that the way life insurance is sold did not meet the increasingly-digital way that people were consuming things, including other financial services products
    • In the more complex permanent life insurance space she was focused on, this was even truer than in term life, where there were starting to be some inroads into direct and digital sales
    • COVID has brought more digitization, but the gap with what customers want is even stronger today as the customer expectation bar has continued to move despite the adoption of more digital tools in life insurance
    • Life insurance products that are tied to wealth management are known in the High Net Worth (NHW) and Ultra High Net Worth (UNHW), but aren’t known elsewhere and yet can be beneficial
    • Amplify looked to spread the availability and understanding of these products, but in a lower-cost, more streamlined way so it is more accessible
    • Amplify sells direct to consumer and through B2B2C digital fintech platforms they embed into
      • B2C allows them a sandbox to see customer needs of consumers clearly and first hand
      • Their partners are in the financial services space, so it’s tied in nicely to what Amplify does
    • Life insurance is generally thought to be something that must be sold, but Hanna points out that it had to be sold because it was always (and only) sold
    • The complexity of the product often came from a desire to reinforce the value of the agent or to create products for edge cases rather than to create something that could be bought (understandably), so Amplify has used transparency and simplicity as guiding principles
    • Amplify raised their seed round in March of 2020 lead by Anthemis, did an A round in October of 2021, and just announced a round lead by Munich Re Ventures
    • They started selling direct in 2020, added partners in 2021, and now are looking at how they can use the rich set of customer persona and demographic info to design unique products to meet the needs of their underserved customer demographic
    • Looking forward, over the next decades, digital access and transparency will increase, as it has in other areas of financial services, while there will still be room for agents, though in more bespoke and high end products and customer segments
      • This gives Hanna hope about the protection and financial wellness options that more people in broader demographics can benefit from

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This episode is brought to you by The Future of Insurance thought leadership series ( from Bryan Falchuk.

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