Fast rising insurtech startup, ETAP has for the past months risen up to the challenge of car insurance in Nigeria and the African continent.
With the Guardian reporting in it’s survey how a below 25 percent of registered vehicle users having their cars insured, the ETAP company is seeking to correct the aversion.
The Guardian survey says only 2.5 million out of 12 million vehicles in Nigeria are insured, showing the abysmal level of motor vehicle insurance registration in the West African country.
Here comes ETAP, who believes it has what it takes to bridge the gap as it moves to make car insurance as easy as taking a picture.
ETAP was birthed few years ago when the founder and CEO, Ibrahim Babalola had a car accident before renewing his insurance, culminating in he spending a lot of money to get it solved. With Babalola’s experience in the insurance company, having worked there, he started speaking to friends and in the process submitted a Y Combinator application on a whim.
His new project ETAP, an acronym for ‘Easy as Taking A Picture’ , was not accepted to the accelerator but he was favoured to get an interview with a YC partner. He had to wait for few years before he could start work on ETAP.
He positioned himself and his new startup to be idealistic and he analysed it further when he said:
“What we’ve done with ETAP is make insurance enjoyable for people by reimagining the entire process. We’ve built ETAP in a way that customers can insure their car in 90 seconds, get their claims settled in three minutes, and more importantly, get rewarded for driving safely.”
To make this possible, ETAP decided to gamify the process, with users having the leverage to access ETAP’s offerings and services through the use of a mobile app, while they see their driving scores for every trip.
The driving scores would then get affected by how safe a user drives, while considering speed, phone handling and navigation factors.
The process is, the higher the driving score of a user, the lower their insurance premiums upon renewal. The approach according to ETAP’s CEO, Babalola was mooted to reward safe drivers while encouraging them to get insured.
“We think that no two individuals have the same risk profile and no two individuals should pay the same premium. We also think that less risky customers shouldn’t be penalised for being less risky”, Babalola said.
Drivers will be able to also earn points for safe driving, with they using the points earned to make purchases on SPAR, Jumia, Shoprite and other brands on the platform.
The ETAP leader board shows the safest drivers on the platform.
Also, users can request emergency services in case of accidents even as they have the option of having their car insured daily, weekly or monthly.
ETAP had July this year partnered with MTN Nigeria to make users have access to it’s website without having to use their existing data balance, making it free.
This is seen as a smart effort to drive adoption into the web page and ETAP various services.
The partnership between ETAP and MTN Nigeria makes the insurance startup a get to go platform for millions of potential customers in the country.
MTN users will be able download the app, browse freely nudging them to drive safely before advertising it’s insurance services to them.
Babalola goes forward to analyse the startup’s core offerings when he said:
“We think insurance in itself shouldn’t be a stand-alone offering. We think it should be an embedded offering in something more holistic. ETAP is a proponent of shared value insurance. What that means is that we think that if we enable customers either by gamifying the engagement or showing them insights that they can use to improve their behaviour, avoid accidents, and keep the roads safer, we think the insurance providers should reward the customers for doing that.”
Aside MTN, the Nigerian startup also partnered with Suzuki CFAO, with the terms of the partnership having people who get to purchase cars from the dealer get ETAP alongside.
ETAP is also setting it sights on expanding it’s user base as it is planning on launching in Ghana later this year and Francophone Africa by next year.