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Goodstein Runs AXA Incubator

As AXA Equitable's new chief innovation officer, Barbara Goodstein will run a newly formed Marketing and Innovation group that will identify growth opportunities and gestate innovative business ideas from conception to delivery.

Barbara Goodstein may not be a technology executive, but as AXA Equitable's (a member of Paris-based AXA Group, $795 billion in assets under management) new chief innovation officer, just about everything she does will have a technology dimension. Goodstein's job as director of AXA's newly formed Marketing and Innovation business group begins with identifying growth opportunities and ways to exploit them through innovative solutions in areas such as new product delivery/speed to market and Web functionality.

But her job doesn't end there -- Goodstein also is responsible for coming up with innovative initiatives, prioritizing them, assembling the necessary staff and external experts, and actually executing on them. "We are the incubator for new ideas," she says.

Goodstein currently is engaged with AXA Equitable's technology leadership in driving innovative Web solutions. "[AXA Equitable CIO] Kevin Murray and I are co-executive leaders of the Web strategy project, and we are looking to not only upgrade and revamp all of our Web sites but also implement some new, state-of-the-art capabilities," she relates.

Outside the Box

Another area of priority for AXA Equitable's Marketing and Innovation group is product innovation. "We're looking at new ways to market and distribute our products, as well as creating innovative products apart from our existing lines," Goodstein says.

In addressing the need for greater speed to market and other areas of competitive distinction, Goodstein is studying the performance of effective insurance competitors and that of companies in other industries as well. "We're trying to replicate the ... most unique concepts we see whether within the insurance industry or outside it."

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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