1871’s First-Ever InsurTech Innovation Lab Brings Together Major Players to Harness the Power of Technology to Revolutionize the Future of Insurance.


J Blaszczykiewicz

Sr. Director of Marketing



Chicago, February 6, 2024 — 1871, global innovation hub launches its first-ever InsurTech Innovation Lab, a 4-month experience built to uniquely connect mature startups and corporates in insurance, starting April 2024. Partnering with us for this exciting initiative is Jeff Chookaszian, Insurance and Financial Services Executive at The Boston Consulting Group, as the Lab’s Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR). This year’s supporters include Allstate, World Business Chicago, ForMotiv, and Snapsheet. Applications are now open until March 4, 2024. 

1871’s first-ever InsurTech Innovation Lab unites all the major players across the insurance landscape —Property and Casualty, Life, and Health — in a collaborative effort to tackle critical challenges and break ground on solutions for future transformation. This spring, 1871’s AI Innovation Lab will run in parallel with the InsurTech Innovation Lab.

“Innovation is at the heart of the insurance industry, but many companies struggle to figure out how to scale innovation to add value. Startups are needed to help large companies innovate,” said Jeff Chookaszian, Insurance and Financial Services Executive at The Boston Consulting Group. “I’m excited to be the Entrepreneur in Residence for the 1871 InsurTech Innovation Lab, and I would encourage any startup in the insurance space to sign up for the Lab, which will give access to large corporates, VCs, and investors, and 1871.”

“Innovation is the compass guiding us through the ever-changing landscape of risk, ensuring that current and future uncertainties are met with ingenious solutions,” said Betsy Ziegler, CEO at 1871.” This new Lab unites the visionary power of tech innovators with the security of insurance expertise, sparking transformative potential.” 


InsurTech Innovation Lab 2024 Highlights

The InsurTech Innovation Lab will operate from 04.01.24 to 06.29.24, focusing on several areas for cohort members to explore, identify, and collaborate to solve critical issues within the industry. Startups serving domains across the InsurTech focus areas will be considered for the cohort. 

Those eligible to join the Lab:

  • Growth-stage startups with a technology or product focused on the InsurTech space 
  • Late-stage startups as partners seeking to elevate their brand as experts and influence the InsurTech industry
  • Corporations as partners sitting at the forefront of InsurTech innovation or seeking to enhance their capabilities and offerings via partnerships 

A selection process will be utilized to ensure that startups admitted to the program are best suited and have proven readiness for optimal lab outcomes. 

Information sessions will be held on 2.08 and 2.22 to provide attendees with a detailed lab curriculum, key dates, and the benefits of participating in the 2024 lab. 


2024 Lab focus areas 

This Lab focuses on several “focus areas” for cohort members to explore, identify, and collaborate to solve issues in insurance tech. 

High-level focus areas include: 

  • Sales & Distribution Innovation 
  • Risk Management & Underwriting 
  • Emerging / New Data Sources 
  • Climate Risk 
  • Future of Mobility 

Within the Lab, participants are connected to experts, enthusiasts, and investors through an immersive series of workshops and other experiences throughout the program. The lab experience alternates in virtual and in-person sessions, convening for two weeks in April, a whole week in May, and a final week in June 2024. 

The program ends with a capstone-like InsurTech Innovation Summit on 06.27.24, a public event dedicated to a full day of immersive programming surrounding insurance tech innovation. 

About 1871 Innovation Labs

The Innovation Labs are a dynamic hub for fostering cutting-edge solutions, collaboration, and technological advancement. These labs offer a platform for startups, industry leaders, investors, and venture capitalists to pioneer the future of various industries, including artificial intelligence, cannabis, supply chain, and beyond. 

Typically running for three or four months, the labs are at the forefront of innovation, connecting key players in the tech ecosystem to drive transformative change and accelerate the development of groundbreaking solutions for today’s challenges,

For inquiries about partnerships or sponsorship options for the InsurTech Innovation Lab or Summit, connect with our team

To stay updated on all InsurTech Innovation Lab news, subscribe here

About 1871 

1871, a nonprofit global innovation hub, exists to inspire, equip, and support early-stage, growth-stage, late-stage, and corporate innovators in building extraordinary businesses. 1871 is home to ~500 early-stage startups, ~250 growth and late-stage companies, and ~60 corporates, and is supported by an entire community focused on accelerating their growth and creating jobs in the Chicagoland area. The member experience includes virtual and in-person access to workshops, events, mentorship, and more. The nonprofit organization has 350 mentors available to its members, alongside access to more than 200 partner corporations, universities, education programs, accelerators, venture funds, and others. Since its inception in 2012, more than 1,050+ alum companies are still active, have created over 14,700 jobs, and have raised more than $3.7 billion in follow-on capital.

About Jeff Chookaszian  

Jeff Chookaszian has over 30 years of experience in the Insurance and Financial Services industry, focusing on commercial and personal P&C insurance, life and annuities, and brokerage. Chookaszian has been at BCG for thirteen years as Managing Director and Senior Partner in the Insurance and Financial Services Practice. In addition, Chookaszian leads BCG’s Insurance Private Equity Practice. Prior to BCG, Chookaszian had an operating role in Zurich’s North America Commercial P&C business as an SVP running Underwriting Operations and Technology and Strategy.  

1871 looks forward to a groundbreaking year of collaboration and innovation at the 2024 InsurTech Innovation Lab. We invite the press and the public to join us in exploring the future of the insurance tech industry.

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