Rapid pace of UK tech investment calls for stronger risk protection
If you thought 2020 was a fast-moving year for tech start-ups in the UK, 2021 is leaning even harder on the accelerator. The amount of money invested in the UK’s tech sector during the first half of this year almost equalled the amount raised during the whole of 2020, according to research by Dealroom.co for the UK's Digital Economy Council. To put that in perspective, investment from Asia and the Middle East, at £1.7 billion, represents just 13.2 per cent of total investments in the country so far this year.
This rate of investment is especially noteworthy considering the UK’s record-setting results last year. According to the 2020 Tech Nation Report, which surveys activity in the UK tech market, UK tech venture capital investment was the third-highest in the world at US$15 billion, following the US and China. Investment in deep technologies including AI, blockchain and Quantum computing climbed 17 percent in the UK – the highest rate of growth in the world.
At a time when pandemic restrictions have made us more reliant on technology than ever before, these investments are fuelling rapid development at tech start-up companies, as well as increased pressure on them to deliver. But what about the new risks that accompany these changes? In a fast-paced environment – particularly one in which the technology sector has shown greater resilience than most other industries to both the pandemic and Brexit – it’s easier for tech companies to overlook or minimise potential exposures in their drive to meet market needs.
“The past 18 months have demonstrated how important it is for businesses of all kinds to be able to flex with new developments – and tech companies have enabled much of that flexibility,” said Jonathan Forster, SME Distribution Director for Travelers Europe. “To meet the moment and deliver for customers, tech start-up companies need to have comprehensive protection in place that anticipates their risks and how they will change.”
Protection to meet the moment
As a tech company evolves, so should its insurance protection. Brokers can best support their clients by partnering with an expert technology insurer that can alert them to emerging risks, suggest strategies to mitigate them, and offer insurance cover tailored to specific exposures. That means having insurance protection that isn’t merely sufficient to manage existing exposures but also anticipates potential gaps and can grow and evolve in step with the client’s business.
Travelers launched Professional Indemnity (PI) Combined to provide tech companies with the comprehensive cover they need in a single package. According to GlobalData research, nearly 39 percent of small- to medium-size businesses lack PI insurance because they believe they don’t need it, feel it’s too expensive, or simply don’t know why it’s important. New technology businesses need PI to contract, and the PI Combined product from Travelers offers full breach-of-contract cover, giving full assurance that tech businesses can trade with confidence, whether it’s their first contract or not.
The product, which was designed specifically for small companies (up to £5m turnover) in the technology and emerging professions sectors, combines Professional Indemnity, Liability, Property and Cyber Fundamentals cover. With sweet spots around computer and electronic consultancies, computer programming and software engineering (to name a few), it can also flex to include further options, including Legal Expenses, depending on each client’s needs. What’s more, since tech companies often look to grow through expansion into worldwide markets, Travelers PI Combined offers automatic worldwide cover to help ensure a smooth path to expansion.
“Tech companies need to be able to stay focussed on the quickly changing needs of their clients, not distracted or derailed by their own exposures,” Forster said. “Risk protection is a key part of a tech company’s business strategy because it’s about building value. When companies have the ideal protection for their needs, they are in a stronger position to stay on course and achieve their goals.”
Authored by Travelers
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