Meet our customer hero
A name synonymous with trust
As the world’s third largest insurer, AXA is a trusted name in nearly every corner of the planet. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is no exception: its subsidiary there, AXA Cooperative Insurance, has experienced rapid growth since its launch in 2008. Its selling point? A mix of cost-competitive policies and unmatched customer service—from the glass towers of Riyadh to the souks of the Red Sea port of Jeddah.
A few years back, AXA Cooperative realized this growth was under threat. In the cutthroat insurance marketplace, its success was increasingly tied to its ability to harness data: to instantly generate quotes for new customers and keep on top of ever-stringent regulations. In the face of these demands, its IT systems weren’t cutting it: its complex and ever-growing application landscape was barely strung together by a web of rigid point-to-point connections. Legacy applications frequently went down due to lack of maintenance. New ones lacked the ability to share data with its industry partners in a secure, efficient manner. In defiance of new regulations, AXA’s data wasn’t even stored inside the country: instead, it lay buried in a jumble of servers in Dubai, Spain and France.
In urgent need of change, AXA Cooperative began planning for a full back-end transformation, which would migrate its data servers to the Kingdom and enable it to assume greater IT autonomy from its AXA Group parent. To make this a success, AXA’s Saudi management knew they needed a modern, API-led integration platform—which would ensure the fluid flow of data to regulators, brokers and customers, and position the company for continued growth into the future. After surveying the competition, they went with the best: webMethods from Software AG.
For AXA Cooperative, the choice of webMethods came down to two key factors: the platform’s unmatched capabilities, and Software AG’s track record of excellence. AXA Group already utilized webMethods at its headquarters in Paris. IT staff there were smitten—and Software AG’s robust Saudi presence gave management an added boost of confidence. At a technical level, AXA was drawn to the easy scalability and mapping capabilities of webMethods Integration Server and the speed of the platform’s Universal Messaging. Most critical of all, webMethods API Gateway, the industry-leading API management solution, meant creating APIs, and exposing them to external partners, would be remarkably fast, secure and simple.
“In today’s insurance marketplace, APIs have the power to make or break a business,” says an IT Senior Architect Manager at AXA Cooperative. “When insurance aggregators are generating quotes, they call in APIs from different companies. If your API response time isn’t fast, your quote might not even show up—and your sales will suffer.”
As the IT Senior Architect Manager and his team soon discovered, webMethods would deliver on its integration promise—and then some. After AXA Cooperative and Software AG signed a deal in 2018, implementation was swift. For its first webMethods project, AXA Cooperative utilized the platform to share data in real time with three key government agencies: the national traffic agency, Najm, which keeps records of accidents, the Council of Cooperative Health Insurance, which oversees all nationwide health policies, and the information security body Elm, which tracks key vehicle safety data. Thanks to the power of APIs, information related to claims could now be shared between AXA and these bodies in an instant— AXA avoided fines for noncompliance.
As anticipated, the shift to API-led integration also increased AXA’s visibility in searches by industry partners and aggregators, bringing in new customers, improving customer engagement and in turn driving new business. IT staff saw major benefits as well. Freed from onerous manual information sharing, they had more time to focus on improving AXA’s back-end and customer-facing processes. And webMethods gave them the perfect set of tools to do it. “webMethods makes our architecture incredibly flexible,” the architect manager says. “We’re able to reuse and reconfigure APIs in so many different contexts, it’s easy to make changes when we need to. And it also gives us peace of mind our integrations are secure.”
With the first stage of its back-end transformation now complete, AXA’s IT team is now turning its focus to improving the customer experience. Plans are in the works to utilize webMethods for a unified customer repository—which will centralize customer data and ensure customer information is accurate, updated and easily accessible. According to the Architect Manager, Software AG’s Saudi Arabia team has already provided invaluable guidance on the project—as it has since the start of AXA’s IT transformation.
“From our first contact with their sales team, to their help in designing our solution and integration architecture, Software AG has been a true partner in every sense,” the architect manager says. “With the best product on the market, we’ve rapidly transformed our operations, achieved a fast time to value and are free to shape our future as a truly data-driven enterprise.”