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Marsh & McLennan (MMC) Unit Unveils Digital Platform in Asia Pacific

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Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc.’s (MMC - Free Report) Oliver Wyman Digital, the digital unit within the company’s global management consulting arm (Oliver Wyman), recently introduced the Edge platform. The digital platform powered by Banking-as-a-Service (BaaS) and Insurance-as-a-Service (IaaS) solutions aims to provide clients a seamless and cost-effective scope for constructing a digital bank or insurance platform and reach the market within six to nine months (per Oliver Wyman’s estimate). The endeavor seems commendable.

In a bid to help its clients further, the modular and scalable platform has been built keeping in mind the regulatory requirements of Asia Pacific. Consequently, the platform minimizes risk and reduces the otherwise high upfront cost. The solution devised by the efficient designers and engineers’ team of Oliver Wyman empowers clients to offer a comprehensive and affordable financial products portfolio encompassing onboarding, payments, lending, and insurance processes.

Thereby, Edge intends to benefit incumbent banks and tech firms in boosting their digital capabilities and catering to the varied customer needs throughout the Asia Pacific region. Several new digital bank entrants in the region will also benefit from the recent launch. By availing of the solution, clients can explore alternative business models, which can fetch new revenue streams and bolster the customer base for them.

Initiatives similar to the latest one seem to be time opportune. With the COVID-19 pandemic triggered digitization pervading across every sphere of life, the preferred way of receiving financial services has also evolved from physical to digital mode. There seems to be a dire need for incumbent banks and new entrants of the region to address the solid customer demand for mobile-first financial services. With 21 new digital banking licenses being issued across the Asia Pacific so far and a maximum of five new licenses likely to be rewarded in Malaysia (a part of the region) in the first-quarter 2022, the Edge platform of the MMC unit seems perfectly placed to tap the robust digital growth of the region.

The recent product launch can only add to the sound performance of Marsh & McLennan’s subsidiary Oliver Wyman, which in turn, is expected to contribute to the overall top-line growth of the company. In line with this unit, the other three subsidiaries of MMC — Mercer, Marsh and Guy Carpenter continue to pursue strategic efforts with an aim to expand product offerings, benefit customers and strengthen global presence. Considering some recent examples, the Mercer unit collaborated with employee experience platform Socrates.ai in December 2021 to aid Mercer Belong customers. In the same month, the Marsh McLennan Agency (MMA) unit of MMC acquired InSource Insurance to bolster client offerings and expand Texas footprint.

In light of a rapidly growing digital economy, Marsh & McLennan remains committed to upgrading digital capabilities for which it continues to launch products and services or pursue buyouts and collaborations. MMC spent $401 million on buyouts in the first nine months of 2021. The company launched the Cyber Risk Analytics Center, which provides a portfolio of tools and critical risk insights for the clients to manage cyber risks in 2021. By doing so, the insurance broker aims to address the dire need for risk management solutions that come hand-in-hand with the growing inclination toward online payments.

Shares of Marsh & McLennan have gained 43.7% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 22%. MMC currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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Other Stocks to Consider

Other top-ranked stocks in the insurance space include Brown & Brown, Inc. (BRO - Free Report) , Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company (WTW - Free Report) and Ryan Specialty Group Holdings, Inc. (RYAN - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 at present.

Brown & Brown’s earnings surpassed estimates in each of the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 18.33%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for BRO’ 2022 earnings suggests 6% year-over-year growth, while the same for revenues indicates an improvement of 8%. The consensus mark has moved north by 1.3% in the past 30 days. Brown & Brown boasts of an impressive Momentum Score of A.

The bottom line of Willis Towers Watson outpaced earnings estimates in each of the last four quarters, the average surprise being 15.27%. The consensus mark for WTW’s 2022 earnings indicates a 5.9% year-over-year improvement. Willis Towers Watson has a VGM Score of B.

Ryan Specialty has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 41.18%, on average. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for RYAN’s 2022 earnings and revenues suggests a rise of 13.6% and 17.2%, respectively, from the prior-year reported figures. The consensus mark for Ryan Specialty’s 2022 earnings has moved 0.8% north in the past 30 days.

Shares of Brown & Brown, Willis Towers Watson and Ryan Specialty have gained 43.5%, 9.9%, and 31.3%, respectively, over a year.