K2, Microsoft and others partner to deliver insurance-market solutions

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Microsoft today announced that it, along with six highly specialised technology partners, is launching the London Market Network, a group of companies formed to combine their expertise to offer the London Insurance Market a ‘one-stop-shop’ designed to meet their technology requirements.

In the UK, this is the first time a group of technology providers in the insurance space have joined forces with the specific intention of meeting the business and technology needs of the London Market.  Microsoft formed the group in recognition of the fact that companies within the London Market are often solving the same problems with similar approaches and using very similar technology toolsets.  The London Market Network aims to provide companies with market leading solutions, pre-integrated which will help reduce the development cost, risk and time of implementation. 

The specialist partners within the London Market Network are:
• Sequel Business Solutions (Broking, Underwriting and Annual Accounting Solutions)
• Moore Stephens (Business Performance Management)
• CIBER (MS-CRM, SharePoint and K2 workflow deployment)
• Finsbury Solutions (Spreadsheet Management)
• K2 (Workflow and Business Process Solutions)
• Autonomy Meridio (Records Management)
• Microsoft (Windows Server 2003, SQL Server 2005, SharePoint Server 2007)

When a company is looking to renew a certain element of its IT infrastructure, the London Market Network offers companies the best and pre-integrated solutions available.  For example, a project might require a new underwriting solution with collaboration and workflow infrastructure in which case Sequel Business Solutions would deploy its Eclipse underwriting solution in conjunction with CIBER who would integrate Microsoft SharePoint and K2 to Eclipse. 

Once the SharePoint and workflow (K2) infrastructure is in place then it becomes easier to integrate business intelligence (Moore Stephens), records management (Autonomy Meridio) or spreadsheet management and compliance (Finsbury) solutions, however this is not a prerequisite.

The uniting factor for all the companies in the London Market Network is their compatibility with Microsoft’s products.  All the solutions are built on the Microsoft stack: (.NET, Windows Server 2003, SQL Server 2005) and integrate to or are built on SharePoint Server 2007. 

Bruce McKee, Insurance Business Development Manager, Microsoft UK said: “All the partners in the group have been selected because of their ability to solve a business issue or problem that exists in the London Market, they have solved this problem before and have customers that can endorse this, they have a solid reputation and as business partners that they have the right cultural fit.”

Mike Thomas, Head of Strategic Change at Brit Insurance said: “One of the biggest challenges we faced was integrating a set of disparate IT solutions into a seamless experience for the users. Using some of the solutions offered by the London Market Network, we can now collaborate more effectively internally and with our business partners, and better manage our information flows and controls. The partners involved have worked together effectively to develop a suite of solutions that will be flexible in supporting the future needs of our business."

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