It’s almost the end of the year, and I think every CEO should look back and reflect on what happened in the past year. For us at DFP, it’s also a welcome opportunity to pause, breathe, and realize just how quickly things are moving. One example came today when I ordered Christmas gifts for the team. Two years ago, I bought two of them, since we were three people working in a basement at the time. Last year, it was seven. This year it’s over twenty. And I couldn’t be happier and prouder working with this brilliant group of people, who have joined us from Amazon, KPMG, private equity, Deliveroo and other outstanding organizations that we can learn from.
This post is a celebration and a recognition of what this driven and talented team has built and achieved in the past year. All I had to do as CEO was to get out of the way and not interfere too much – the rest happened almost automatically.
1. We worked with some of the world’s leading insurers
By far, what’s given us the most satisfaction as a team has been able to help QBE, Hiscox, Tennyson, Euler Hermes, Expression and others achieve their business objectives by using our technology. We are in a true partnership with them, and are helping each other create a meaningful difference in the SME insurance space. These organizations have trusted us and supported us, and we are humble and grateful for their partnership. Thank you!
2. We won industry awards in more than five categories
When we started, we tried to enter a few competitions here and there, but never really expected to win. Later, it became a good signal for the market that we were onto something. And this year, it became almost an expectation that we would win everything we entered. Anna in our marketing team did an absolutely outstanding job throughout the year, and we couldn’t have done it without her. Throughout 2018, DFP was named:
- Best Insurtech Supplier (Insurance Post)
- Best Global Insurtech (DXC)
- UK Winner of the Zurich Innovation World Championship
- UK Winner on the Insurance Innovation Challenge (ACORD)
- Best Fintech in the UK (InvestHK)
3. We grew revenues by over 5x into million dollar territory
At the beginning of 2018, I remember reading that less than 2% of new companies will ever reach the million-dollar mark in terms of revenue. And especially in insurance technology, where things generally take longer, we always knew that we would face challenges in growing the topline. But thanks to the amazing technology, our helpful investors and most important of all our outstanding customers, we were able to grow past a million USD revenue run-rate, in just over two years. This doesn’t mean that our plans won’t derail, Brexit-uncertainty could impact us in 2019 and many other things could happen, but with our current contracts we are in a strong position to grow even faster next year. Someone recently started joking that this type of revenue growth is “faster than Salesforce”, since it took them three years to get here. And speaking of Salesforce…
4. We partnered with Salesforce
Every year, Salesforce goes out to find the ten “best” FinTech companies for the Finserve program, which allows the best providers to get featured on the AppExchange and get support from Salesforce’s own teams. Previous successful companies going through it includes Onfido and Finxact. This year, Salesforce picked two InsurTech companies for the first time: DFP (us) and Octo Telematics (which was valued at over $US500m+ in their latest transaction). This gives us an unmatched opportunity to “play in the major leagues” and help serve our customers more completely. It also speeds up our integrations and helps improve data security, which is a welcome add-on for all our partners. So from now on, it’s possible to access DFP’s groundbreaking analytics directly in the AppExchange!
5. The DFP Risk Atlas saw the light of day
Launching a new product is always risky, and when you are adding four new product modules, improving functionality and increasing the number of data sources we connect to all at the same time, things get very interesting! But the engineering team worked closely with the data science team and managed to get the DFP Risk Atlas launched just before InsureTech Connect in Las Vegas. In 2019, we will improve it even further and integrate more deeply into Salesforce, which is going to be extremely exciting! Massive shoutout to Keith, Geth, Vincent, Daniel and the rest of our talented team who made it all happen.
So what’s next?
Looking forward to 2019, we will continue our growth journey and work towards our mission of protecting small businesses with the right technology. We will partner with more insurers, brokers, underwriters and technology providers, and continue to be a force for positive change in the insurance industry. Our team will grow, and we will expand into new markets. At the end of 2019, I hope to look back at another year where I managed to “stay out of the way” and allow this amazing team to grow and prosper.
And who knows – maybe there will be even more Christmas presents to give to the team at the end of next year…?
A special thank you to our customers, partners, investors (Pentech and Eos have been amazingly supportive throughout the year), supporters and everyone who made this journey possible – upwards and onwards into 2019!
Happy Holidays everyone!
Written by Erik Abrahamsson