Last week’s annual ILTCI (Intercompany Long Term Care Insurance) conference, the biggest industry event of its kind, was an exciting event both for our company, Assured Allies, and for all who attended. We came into the conference with a lot of momentum, having just announced our $42.5M Series B funding round and investing in a bigger footprint at the conference than ever before. In addition to hosting both a kick-off cocktail hour and a bustling booth, we lent our talents to several panels led by Chief Growth Officer Larry Nisenson, US Legal Counsel Mike Gugig, Head of Actuarial Nkenge Blue, and more.
It was an investment that paid off for our company and the many others who are working hard to make the most of what many are calling a renaissance in the LTCI industry. Roughly 1,000 LTCI industry enthusiasts descended on Denver to discuss the state of long-term care insurance today and delve into the trends that will continue to drive disruption and innovation in 2023 and beyond. Innumerable conversations advanced lines of new or expanding business prospects for all comers.
Here’s a brief rundown of what we learned.
The wellness trend continues
Wellness continues to attract a lot of interest, driven both by consumer demand for how insurers can help them reduce risk, the push for better customer engagement, and, of course, a way to reduce carrier claims and cost. In the long-term care insurance industry, in particular, there is interest in how wellness can benefit policyholders, add value, and act as a catalyst for new innovative products to address longstanding gaps in the current marketplace.
Our Assured Allies booth was abuzz as a result, given that both of our products, AgeAssured and NeverStop, are in such alignment with the booming wellness trend. AgeAssured, our legacy product, provides 1:1 coaching and targeted, low-cost interventions for in-force policyholders so they can age in place successfully. One clear metric of success (more below) is that policyholders eligible for AgeAssured is expanding from ~60,000 to over 200,000 by the end of 2023.
Our latest launch, NeverStop, also sparked excitement as an innovative way for carriers to make long-term care insurance more accessible for the 65M Americans who need it. NeverStop is able to do this thanks to precision actuarial modeling, a streamlined all-digital underwriting process that takes less than an hour to complete, and a personalized wellness program that incentivizes policyholders to take healthy actions to feel better now and earn long-term care credits in the future.
Wellness has to demonstrate value
Talking about wellness and innovation is no longer enough. Carriers, distributors, and agents want to see proof that wellness adds value. This “show me the money” stage is perhaps both a natural organic moment in the industry after many years of innovative pilots and insuretechs as well as a reflection of increased investor scrutiny in tech and start-up companies generally, due to macroeconomic forces.
Assured Allies was fortunately well positioned to demonstrate that wellness really does benefit the bottom line, after years of a rigorous analytical approach. We have enough of a track record now with carriers who have been with us since we launched in 2019 to demonstrate that our AgeAssured aging-in-place interventions are both making life better for policyholders and saving money on claims. Specifically, AgeAssured reduces cost of claims by 18%; lowers incidence by 13%; and shifts claims from facility to home care by 15% (specifically for women).
Huge potential for new products
“It really seems like the resurgence in the long-term care insurance industry that everyone has been waiting for is finally taking off,” reported our Senior Product Actuary, Erik Wenzel, who gave a presentation titled “The Long-term Care Renaissance: New Product and Market Opportunities” in the actuarial track. Erik talked about the win-win opportunity of wellness for both policyholders and carriers, both for in-force business and for new business. Erik used NeverStop as an example of how carriers can create innovative new products that reduce cost while being more attractive to the 55-75 age demographic in helping them prevent age-related decline by taking healthy actions today. The audience response was very positive and several people asked for the slides.
“There is huge potential for new products,” said Wenzel after attending several other panels and touring the exhibition hall. “One is the worksite market in states like California that are considering long-term care legislation. Another area for innovation is less expensive, simpler products like short-term care that are targeted to older individuals who are not in perfect health.”
“It’s so important to get distribution input in the product creation process,” said Wenzel. “It was eye-opening to get real reactions at the conference to our new products, like the NeverStop Bridge Annuity that we launched with Equitrust.”
It’s more than just another booth
If you’re hosting a booth at a conference, you know you have to design a banner or two, offer some giveaway goodies, collect contact info, and hoist your logo up high. But stop and think: are you just going through the motions, or do you have a creative vision for your booth?
This year, our Director of Product Marketing Michelle Spinale pulled out all of the stops and went full domestic on our booth, with A-frame rooflines, architectural display nooks, and a kitchen counter with stools! Not only was this the perfect theme for our successful aging-in-place mission, but our booth design invited people to sit and stay awhile, with their lunch, their cocktail, or their tired feet. Chatting around the kitchen counter set a relaxing, informal tone that catalyzed many productive conversations.
This is an exciting time for the LTC industry. Our Assured Allies team members in attendance soaked up everything the conference had to offer and had dozens of productive conversations. We will reap the benefits over the upcoming quarter and beyond.
“ILTCI was an opportunity for us to introduce in a formal way our new product to the LTCI industry,” said VP of Marketing Andy Freedman. “This was the time where we showed up to tell our story of both our incredible products and the results we are seeing in the market. We were excited to be joined by our NeverStop partners at Equitrust and FedLife and have a chance to connect in person with many of our LTC carriers and partners. I got valuable feedback on our product and ideas for how we can introduce this innovation—and access to LTC insurance and wellness program—to many more adults around the country over the next year.”