In order to provide products and services in a more competent manner than could have been offered had WISe, a London-based standards body remained under its not-for-profit model-and following a merger with ACORD (Pearl River, NY) to create a global standards body-WISe has sold the assets of Trusted Trading and Business Centre to Ins-sure Services Ltd. (London). The combination of the convergence with ACORD and the sale to Ins-sure concludes WISe's mission of developing standards, strategies and solutions for insurance e-commerce and dissolves WISe as a legal entity.
"When WISe was put together the model that everyone was very happy about was the non-profit model," says Kevin Ashby, chief executive officer, WISe. "It was recognized that sooner or later we would have to review that model," in order to complete the company's mission. In an effort to decide the best model for WISe, the company looked to define the pieces of the organization. "We agreed that we should look at the business in two strands," breaking the parts into the standards area and the product space.
"Our reviews of the standards space led us to the ACORD merger," he says. "That created a truly global standard space with representation on both sides of the Atlantic." Working towards its second strategy of providing products and services that the insurance community needs to realize the potential of e-commerce, WISe began looking at its options. "We felt the best way to define a model and resolve this issue was to address it from a trade/sell point of view."
Accordingly, WISe issued an investment memorandum. The 20 companies that responded were narrowed to eight and then Ins-sure was chosen. "It's a blend of industry ownership and third party capital."