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2021

One step ahead for French mobility

Users are safer on the road and can reduce their insurance premiums with BlaBlaCar Coach
Maria-Eleni Mageira
Digital Marketing & Communications Manager

The world's leading community-based travel platform BlaBlaCar and motor insurance specialist L'olivier Assurance, the French branch of the Admiral Group, have formed a partnership with our shareholder, Swiss Re. On 14 September, news travelled around the world about this new, historic collaboration. Not only will this partnership advance innovation in the French mobility market, but it will also improve road safety and make mobility more sustainable thanks to the adoption of Coloride.

BlaBlaCar Coach is a novel and innovative app, powered by Swiss Re's telematics solution and Movingdots' cutting-edge technology. It is available with a co-branded annual car insurance policy entitled "BlaBlaCar Assurance par L'olivier". The product also provides insurance savings for users.

Now that a few weeks have passed since the partnership was announced, we virtually met the people who have been there since the very beginning, Brice de Crevoisier, Partnerships Manager at L'olivier Assurance, and Gwénaël Moy, Insurance Advisor at BlaBlaCar. Here is what they have to say.

BlaBlaCar connects drivers and passengers with the world's leading carpooling platform. Gwénaël, what was it that sparked your decision to take this one step further and develop the BlaBlaCar Coach app in collaboration with Swiss Re and Movingdots?

BlaBlaCar leverages technology to connect over 100 million members, making travel more affordable, sociable and convenient. With so many people sharing cars and buses every day, we feel it's our responsibility to make the road a safer place. Therefore, we decided to continue investment in improving safety through the adoption of telematics solutions. Swiss Re's vision and technology was a perfect match to our ambition.

Now, BlaBlaCar Coach introduces drivers to a new and improved driving experience. Together with insurance offerings, it provides additional safety and a cost reduction, based on driving behaviours and more accurate risk assessments. Giving feedback and advice to our members so that they can become the best drivers on the road is part of the customer experience that we want to champion as part of our digital business.

Brice, we all know that risk assessment is one of the biggest challenges in the world of motor insurance. How do you feel about BlaBlaCar Coach and how does it help you and your customers, the drivers, in this regard?

First of all, we think it's important to reassure our customers that this app is here to help them rather than to monitor their behaviour for pricing purposes. Risk assessment is a challenge for any insurer, that's a no-brainer. What's new though is the growing willingness by the public to share data so tasks can be performed more effectively, no matter the sector. If you suffer from a sleep disorder, then you're likely to wear a smartwatch to monitor your sleep. The same applies to smart bathroom scales if you're about to start a new diet. And it works. We also believe that customers who proactively agree to sharing driving data and receiving welcome tips will become safer and greener drivers.

For several years now, we've noticed the growing importance of telematics and data analytics. Successful deployment of these technologies often goes beyond simply tracking vehicles. Gwénaël, from your point of view, how could telematics data further contribute to increasing members' engagement with BlaBlaCar services?

Telematics has a central place in our modern digital reality, making processes more efficient, sustainable and less error-prone. Therefore, the most successful telematics deployments are certainly those that go beyond just GPS. We have the possibility of leveraging telematics in order to improve overall safety. Think about monitoring driver fatigue, when we know it causes one in five fatal and serious road accidents. And think about tracking critical events, such as acceleration or hard braking and providing personalised coaching.

To achieve the ultimate goals of BlaBlaCar Coach improving road safety and making mobility more sustainable, we rely on high-quality data. The very success of BlaBlaCar relies on a strong cross-side network effect and trust among users. We want to recreate a level of trust in our community that is almost comparable to the level of trust among friends.

Brice, as new opportunities are emerging in the digital ecosystem, what progress has been made to date around digital transformation and risk assessment?

BlaBlaCar Coach is a great and new opportunity on the market for customers to profit from the expertise and the driving assessment of an app, where traditionally, it would have required the installation of an in-vehicle device. So far, such digital disruption has struggled to penetrate the market. In order to bring about innovation, you need to firstly think about the customer experience and remove any inconveniences. To that extent, the use of an app is clearly a big break!

Brice de Crevoisier is Partnerships Manager at L'olivier Assurance
Gwénaël Moy is  Insurance Advisor at BlaBlaCar

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