Austin, Tex.-based life insurance software provider InforcePRO has shut down its operations, forcing insurance advisors who relied on the software to find alternative ways of managing their clients’ in-force insurance policies.
The company, founded in 2011 by Cameron Jacox (who left the company in 2016), provided software to help life insurance advisors monitor their clients’ in-force life insurance policies and identify sales opportunities within their books of business. Insurance advisors throughout Canada and the U.S used the software, which was called LifeAssist until 2014.
InforcePRO notified its software users last week that it would be discontinuing operations, citing a failure to raise sufficient funding.
“Over the past four years, InforcePRO has tackled the enormous challenge of transforming the life insurance industry by addressing the need for life agents to perform more frequent and thorough policy reviews,” the company said in an email to its customers. “Regrettably, we can no longer continue operations and we will be closing our doors effective immediately.”
The news came as a surprise to advisors such as James Taylor, with Toronto-based Financial Health Management Group Inc., who had been using the software for several years.
“It was a bit of a shock,” he says. “There was no indication [this would happen].”
He relied on the software to keep tabs on his clients’ in-force policies and explore options for renewing or making changes to existing policies.
“From a practice perspective, we have lost a very significant capability of understanding what’s there, understanding what those options are,” Taylor says.
The software helped advisors leverage technology to be more efficient in an industry that’s typically very paper-intensive and slow to innovate, Taylor adds.
“They were bringing the life insurance industry out of the dark ages,” he says.
InforcePRO said in its email to its customers that one of the key challenges it faced was accessing the necessary data from insurance carriers.
In order for the tool to function properly, it required regularly updated data feeds from carriers, showing the status of all in-force policies. That’s something the carriers weren’t too keen on providing, according to Ami Maishlish, president of Markham, Ont.-based CompuOffice Software Inc., the company that developed life insurance comparison and quotation software LifeGuide. (LifeGuide generated the quotes used within the InforcePRO software.)
“The insurance companies don’t seem to have been thrilled to take part,” Maishlish says. “It’s quite an arduous task for the insurance companies to provide all of that information … without much prospect of return on the investment.”
Prior to shutting down its system, InforcePRO provided its users with a copy of the data they had on the system.
Advisors who had been using InforcePRO could consider uploading their data into a different software program, such as London, Ont.-based Life Design Analysis Inc., Maishlish suggests.
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