Tell us a little about your career to date?
In truth, my career has consisted entirely of insurance – in different forms of course – but it’s safe to say I’m stuck in it.
I completed a degree in Sports Science in 2007, straight after I went travelling for a year to the USA. The first proper job I landed on my return was in insurance, as it was the first thing that came up. I’d love to say it was an industry that attracted me to it, but I hate insurance then and (to some extent) I still hate it now.
My insurance career started by selling caravan insurance. Some days it felt akin to fleecing the elderly for double glazing, which morally never sat right with me. After that, I sold insurance to electrical contractors and slowly made my way to small business insurance. Unfortunately, there are no glamorous jobs in insurance.
Eventually, I had honed my craft enough to work exclusively with businesses. At which point I set up and established the commercial division of a successful independent firm in the midlands. Here I held the position of commercial manager for 5 years, which entailed growing the department from £0 to £5m. It was here that I also realised just how broken commercial insurance is.
What does your role entail?
I’m the founder of Fuelled and we’re creating dynamic insurance for startups and high growth businesses. We do that by using data to power flexible insurance. It’s designed to save businesses hours/days each year on their insurance management.
After all, everyone hates dealing with their insurance – even me!
What has been your biggest achievement?
In the first 6 months of this year, we sold £1m of insurance premiums. It was a massive milestone for us and real validation for the hard work we’ve put in.
For context, in the whole of 2020, we sold £800k of insurance.
What has been your biggest challenge and how have did overcome it?
This is going to sound ridiculous, but the biggest challenge with insurance is actually dealing with Insurers. The industry is broken.
Insurers will tell the world they are “innovative” but their definition of innovation is a million miles away from other industries.
Trying to bring insurers on this journey of innovation has 100% been the biggest issue. If I take that away, we’re just building and doing insurance the way it absolutely shouts be done. Which is easy!
What big problem is your company solving?
Underinsurance is a HUGE issue in the insurance industry. It’s estimated that well over 50% of all SMEs are currently incorrectly or underinsured. Our data actually shows us that this figure is well over 90% when just looking at startup and scaleup businesses.
Growing businesses that raise capital, hire quickly, act immediately are never in a good position to deal with their insurance. It’s often the very last thing they think about during busy periods. We’ve created a solution that will eventually mean businesses will never have to think about their insurance again, it’s just DONE.
What has been your biggest learning experience?
It sounds cliché but I really do learn something every day. Most of the learnings are personal ones too. I’m a much better person because of being a founder.
I tend to live by the mantra “It can only get better from here” which is something I tell myself on the bad days. (thankfully not too many of those).
What advice do you have for your teenage self?
Don’t contemplate, just get on with it. In fact, it would be my advice to anyone looking to start a business.