The annuity business has grown and changed considerably over the past decade: in particular, solutions that automate the sales process have matured significantly during this period, and have been deployed by a large number of carriers and distribution partners. Given the potential for these solutions to improve the sales experience and reduce costs for both carriers and distributors while supporting changes in compliance processes, carriers are considering broader implementations to support their business models.
In our latest study on annuities distribution tech trends, I review the drivers that lead to implementation, the products that are currently on the market, and the issues that carriers will want to consider as they frame future strategic plans in this line of business. My findings include the following:
- Carriers’ strategies are driven by the distribution channel’s adoption of technology.
- Unless a carrier controls distribution, this is a buy rather than build decision.
- Integration with other components in the sales process is a key area that should be planned for carefully.
- Because of the control distributors have, carriers that have been deploying capabilities in this space may find it necessary to support multiple platforms in the future.
- The technologies are not tremendously differentiated by functionality and all have similar future roadmaps.
- The Ebix and Aplifi products have much greater market penetration today, which could impact deployment and prioritization decision.