Mark Harrop Business Development Manager

Sep 16

Crowdfunding is helping to save the casualties of high insurance premiums

An injured dog in Manchester received just under £1,800 to undergo lifesaving treatment recently, after his owner reached out using “Crowdfunding” platform GoFundMe. This benevolent trend involves a person in need posting an advert, to which good natured internet users respond by offering cash donations.  Aquarium Software, world leading pet industry technologists - co-incidentally also in Manchester - believes the new craze offers a vote of confidence to humanity, yet the sheer volume of adverts on the site reveals a shocking trend for the pet insurance market.

“The ad for Judo, the Akita, in Manchester, was truly inspirational in the fact that the owner managed to raise just under £1,800 in only three days,” said Mark Colonnese, Sales and Marketing Director for Aquarium Software. “However, the fact that so many users worldwide use the site as the last resort for their pets, highlights yet again that the pet insurance market still isn’t accessible enough to consumers; only around 20% of household animals are covered that’s something that we’re looking to help change.”

Those pet owners that either can’t find cover for their pet or can’t afford the cover that is on offer are left to cough up astronomical vets’ bills that are now higher than ever, thanks to state of the art medical treatments mirroring those used on humans. According to the Association of British Insurers, the average vet bill in the UK now costs £300, a figure that continues to rise. In Judo’s case, he required treatment for a torn cruciate ligament, but other pricey conditions include diabetes and lymphoma, for which there is no guarantee the dog will survive.

“Although the rise in vets’ bills is causing these premiums to rise, those without cover are left to face the full brunt on their own, and if they can’t afford it then sites like GoFundMe are a last resort,” explained Colonnese. “Another factor when it comes to unaffordable premiums is fraud; this accounts for around £2million a year according to the latest figures, and there is still a lot of work bring the methods employed to catch fraudsters in line with other insurance markets.”

Aquarium creates bespoke technology platforms targeted at making the pet insurance market more profitable for the insurer, and at the same time more affordable for the consumer by using state of the art “cloud” technology that links up with comprehensive vets’ records and utilises ‘management by exception’. The result is a more efficient way of tracking fraudsters, processing claims and developing an unprecedented customer journey that can leave the pet owner as emotionally tied to the insurance provider as they are to their actual pet.