IMA Financial Group, top-10 U.S. insurance broker, renowned for digital asset risk management, last year pioneered the issuance of the first-ever blockchain-based certificate of insurance (COI) as a non-fungible token (NFT). Executed on behalf of Engiven within Decentraland, this transformative step ensures the verifiable and accessible recordkeeping of COIs, addressing the prevalent challenges in the construction and oil and gas industries.
The transaction was completed on behalf of IMA Financial Group‘s client, Engiven, a B2B cryptocurrency donation software provider. The COI process, a fundamental procedure for brokers, therefore became the focal point for showcasing the value of NFTs in the business realm. With hundreds of millions of COIs issued annually, IMA Financial Group, a top-10 U.S. insurance broker, leveraged its Web3Labs research and development facility in the metaverse to explore new possibilities in Web 3.0 technologies.
The advent of Web3Labs, situated in Decentraland, underlines IMA‘s commitment to staying at the forefront of blockchain innovation. As the metaverse gains prominence, IMA recognizes the need to adapt, opening avenues in the virtual world for research, development, and exploration. Justin Jacobs, Senior Vice President and Web3Labs Director at IMA, emphasized the strategic importance of the COI process as a starting point, creating usability and value for clients and their partners.
Beyond issuing NFT COIs, IMA Financial Group dove deeper into the metaverse with its Web3Labs initiative. The decision to establish a research and development facility in Decentraland, an Ethereum-based virtual world, mirrors the growing trend of companies exploring the potential of blockchain in virtual spaces. With the NFT market exceeding $40 billion, IMA strategically positions itself to understand and cater to the insurance needs of this burgeoning asset class.
METAVERSE VALUE CHAIN
IMA’s foray into the metaverse is not limited to NFT COIs; it encompasses a comprehensive exploration of the metaverse value chain. The firm aims to advise clients on decentralized finance (DeFi) and navigate the evolving landscape of crypto, NFTs, and the metaverse. Drawing parallels with the growth trajectory of the cannabis industry, where IMA has established a significant presence, the metaverse becomes a new frontier for risk management.
The launch of IMA Web3Labs marks a significant stride in the metaverse’s intersection with insurance. Positioned as the metaverse’s first insurance and risk management research facility, IMA Web3Labs, situated in Decentraland, is funded by IMA‘s investment arm, IMA Investments. The virtual research facility aims to test, explore, and bring to market risk and insurance strategies tailored to the metaverse.
ADDRESSING THE NFT GAP IN INSURANCE
IMA identified a crucial gap between the exponential growth in NFTs and the lack of fundamental risk transfer and management strategies. With $20 billion worth of NFTs traded in 2021 and the market value surpassing $40 billion, IMA plans to mint its own NFTs, advancing expertise in the digital and metaverse opportunities ecosystem. The metaverse, as a dynamic environment, requires swift testing, learning, and adjustment – a paradigm IMA embraces through Web3Labs.
In conclusion, IMA Financial Group‘s journey from pioneering NFT COIs to establishing Web3Labs reflects a strategic commitment to navigating the evolving landscape of blockchain, crypto, and the metaverse. As the metaverse becomes a focal point for innovation, IMA positions itself at the forefront, shaping the future of insurance in this dynamic and transformative space.