Can Your Tech Cover Keep Up?
Tue Oct 12 2021
Rapid pace of Irish tech investment calls for stronger risk protection
While the past year has presented an oversize share of challenges for world economies, Ireland’s tech sector has helped the country weather many of them. The country’s position as a hub for tech start-ups, particularly in fields such as medical technology, software development and financial technology, has made it an attractive target for investment: TechIreland reports that tech funding reached a record €1.2 billion last year. That momentum has carried into 2021, with the Irish Venture Capital Association reporting a total of €250 million invested in the first quarter, as compared with €229 million for the same period last year.
Looking ahead, Ireland is making investments to strengthen its pipeline for technology growth and enhance its position as a location for small- to medium-size tech businesses. A Technology University, slated for a 2022 opening, could serve as a springboard for new tech businesses. The country’s infrastructure investments planned for Project Ireland 2040 are expected to further enable the country’s growth as a tech centre.
At a time when pandemic restrictions have made us more reliant on technology than ever before, these investments are fuelling rapid development at tech 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 the pandemic – 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 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.”