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September 27, 2004

Actuarial inspired business model takes 1st in contest

. . . we awarded the $20,000 top prize to Paws, the pet health insurance startup. The MBAs behind this plan had no whizbang technology; their strength was that they seemed to truly understand their potential customers. They'd conducted detailed consumer surveys to find out that 15 percent of the 130 million dogs and cats in this country are good prospects for health insurance because their owners either have already been shocked by veterinary bills of more than $1,000 or simply wish to pamper their pets. The team also convinced a leading veterinary hospital to give them access to decades' worth of pet medical records so that they could develop reliable actuarial tables. The team planned to keep marketing costs low by teaming with a pet food company to put flyers and coupons inside bags of dog and cat food.

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Posted by Tom Troceen