Leading Latam ecommerce marketplace Mercado Libre has already applied to the Insurance Superintendence in Argentina to be granted authorization as proxy agent to provide its online platform Mercado Pago for insurance intermediaries and carriers to start selling insurance covers on a competitive basis.
It is expected to launch these services through a mobile app by January 2021 with a first offering of insurance products to cover mobile phones property risks including damages and theft as a promising area with few current providers. This first offering is addressed to cover mobile phones as the main asset that is used to access the app. This InsurTech operation will be led by Carlos Cernadas, Mercado Libre’s current New Businesses Regional Director.
The offering adds to other services in the fintech area already available through Mercado Pago such as digital payments, credit facilities and investment products, according to Paula Arregi, Marcado Pago Senior Vice President.Their goal is to ease the access of previously unexplored population segments to a wide range of financial products.
This is not the first incursion of Mercado Libre into the insurtech area as they previouly arranged a partnership with iProUp and La Caja to launch an online quoting service for home and auto insurance policies.
This move by Mercado Libre contributes to foster innovation in the highly regulated insurance sector across Latam, where there are other players with similar offerings such as Tuseguro.com, Seguros123, Comparaonline, Comparamejor, among others.
iProUp (2020). ‘Mercado Pago ahora también es una insurtech: su plan para convertirse en un «marketplace» de seguros’. Accessed from: https://www.iproup.com/finanzas/16873-mercado-pago-como-vendera-seguros-en-su-plataforma as at 09.17.2020.