EP 214 – Mark Simmons – CEO Europe and Asia at bolttech – I See It as a Way to Supercharge Customer Experience


Michael Waitze worked in Global Finance for more than 20 years, employed by firms like Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, primarily in Tokyo.  Michael lived and worked in Tokyo from February 1990 until December 2011.  Michael always maintained a particular focus on how technology could be used to make businesses more efficient and to drive P/L growth. Michael is a leader in the digital media space, building one of the biggest and fastest-growing podcast listener bases in the region.  His AsiaTechPodcast.com show has listeners in more than 170 countries and his company, Michael Waitze Media produces some of Asia’s most popular podcasts.

Mark Simmons

Mark leads the growth and development of our businesses across Asia and Europe. He was previously the CEO of bolttech’s device protection business and co-founder of our Southeast Asian operations. Mark brings over 20 years’ experience in business development and was one of the pioneers of smartphone insurance in the region. Mark started his career in sport and had won numerous titles for the British Junior waterski team. Outside of work, Mark’s thirst for adventure extends from water skiing, surfing, ice hockey to motocross racing.

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The Asia InsurTech Podcast spoke with Mark Simmons, the CEO of bolttech for Europe and Asia, and delved into the changing landscape of insurance and insurtech, focusing on emerging trends in Asia and Europe. Highlighting the concept of “life of the asset,” Mark explains how building services around an asset, be it a car, mobile phone, or even a family, can prevent loss. With a past in mobile phone insurance and being pivotal in Asia’s restaurant delivery evolution—culminating in the launch of Food Panda after selling to Rocket Internet—Mark has a rich entrepreneurial background. He underscores the significance of explaining to potential clients the importance of products and how they fulfill their needs.

The podcast touches upon the revolution of embedded insurance. The goal? To eliminate friction, making products more accessible and straightforward. This has been achieved through advancements in technology and strategic partnerships, especially with e-commerce platforms. With the protection gap remaining a concern, especially in low-income sectors, bolttech aims to bridge this divide. When queried about bolttech’s potential to become a ‘super app’, Mark discusses the company’s dual approach, catering to both B2B and B2C sectors. They provide comprehensive solutions for businesses like Grab, Rabbit Line Pay, while their product, ‘bolttech home’, aggregates home technology, even offering cyber coverage options.

Mark believes insurance plays a pivotal role in consistent client engagement, referencing a telematics experience in Latin America and drawing inspiration from giants like Amazon for best-in-class customer experience. The discussion then shifts to the role of AI in insurance. Mark elaborates on its importance in improving accessibility and affordability, allowing for dynamic risk management and enhancing customer communication strategies.

On the expansion front, bolttech boasts of significant capital raises, setting records in insurtech equity series. They are strategically targeting digital capabilities and potential business acquisitions. In the podcast’s concluding segment, Mark hints at the possibility of opening up bolttech’s platform, likening it to WordPress’s successful open-source strategy. The idea is to move ‘bolttech home’ in a direction that offers diverse services, ranging from security and cyber protection to insurance, aiming to create a seamless and holistic customer experience.

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