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Innovative Insurance Program Disrupts the Maritime Market as “Program Launch of the Year”

In November 2022, specialty insurance broker One80 Intermediaries launched the first-of-its-kind boat rental insurance program in partnership with vQuip and insurance carrier partner, Nationwide Insurance.

Bringing innovation to the maritime industry, this rental insurance program provides liability coverage for individual boat renters across all 50 states. With this innovation shaking up the maritime industry, the vessel liability program was recently named the 2023 Program Launch of the Year at the Program Manager Awards in New York City.

The 2023 Program Launch of the Year recognized a new, innovative product launch that broke boundaries and made waves in the market. The winning criteria required that programs be efficiently structured, well-priced and successfully executed.

Following three years of detailed development, the One80 Charter Vessel Liability program was launched, allowing the purchase of personalized boat rental insurance through vQuip’s end-to-end operational platform.

When a renter works with vQuip, they receive access to affordable renter’s insurance, which protects them financially from injuries or damage caused to themselves, others or the watercraft while operating the boat rental. This not only benefits and safeguards the renters but also adds value to rental facilities by providing them with more competitive rates on their commercial coverage year after year, upon renewal.

Before this program launch, an individual renter or charterer of a boat had no means of securing liability protection for themselves as an operator of a vessel.

“After going marina to marina, I realized that not only was the customer experience for a rental a headache but there was a hole in the risk management process of boat rental businesses–no rental insurance,” says vQuip CEO Cam Serigne. “From here, I sought out maritime insurance carriers, underwriters and lawyers to see what it would take to bring personalized renter’s insurance to the market for the very first time. Now our vision for renter’s insurance has come to life.”

The One80 Charter Vessel Liability program is highly adaptive, combining Nationwide’s significant experience with rentals and marinas with One80’s ability to handle claims on their behalf–all mediated and made available through vQuip’s digital platform.

We thank One80 Intermediaries and Nationwide Insurance for their hard work and commend the recognition of the One80 Vessel Program at the 2023 Program Manager Awards.

Learn more about the personalized renter’s insurance program here:

Streamline Operations and Safety with vQuip

Ever wondered how vQuip can help streamline your operations and enhance safety measures before, during and after each booking?

We produced a brief video that explains how we work and the benefits of partnering with our team.

With vQuip on your side, your boat rental business gains:

  • Streamlined paperwork
  • Smart, affordable renter’s insurance options for your customers
  • A customer success team of real people who are knowledgeable and care
  • Tools for your staff to brief your customers and prepare them for a safe trip

If you believe your business is ready to simplify your vetting and booking process, give us a shout. We’d love to show you what we’re all about.

The Time is Now to Modernize an Archaic Boat-Rental Industry

Rental facilities that leverage technology to enhance operations will win both with insurers and customers.

Over the past couple of years, we saw a huge surge in demand for boat rentals and other outdoor water activities. During the pandemic, people itched to get out of their homes and head for the nearest beach or lake.

With this spike in demand came a very logical surge in accidents and deaths related to boating with boating accidents increasing about 25% between 2021 and 2022. Rental facilities were not immune to the fallout.

Insurance businesses that cater to the watercraft rental space reacted. When we dug into the issue, we realized a few things that were causing pain for the industry.

For instance, according to the hold harmless/waiver that rental facilities ask their customers to sign, the company must be shown to be negligent in order to be found liable for what happens on the water. Ongoing conversations with rental businesses and insurance-carrier partners revealed that this form reflected an archaic process that often left rental facilities exposed should an incident occur.

Nine times out of ten, a rental business is relying on a seasonal worker who is between the ages of 16 and 22 to facilitate core processes that are critical to prove non-negligence in a potential claim. These processes include:

  • Gathering signatures on all relevant documents;
  • Identity validation and age check;
  • Providing waterway navigation and maps;
  • Equipment checks;
  • Safety briefings;
  • Monitoring GPS solutions;
  • Incident reporting;
  • 24/7 Customer Success;
  • And much, much more…

One slip up by these employees could leave the business completely exposed. Consider that running a busy dock on July Fourth is an incredibly difficult task. Add the complexity of managing the operation via stacks of paperwork, human error and multiple systems? This can make the work nearly impossible.

With the rising demand across industries for quick, easy and fast service, it is becoming necessary for boat rental facilities to be efficient and thorough. Serious businesses can’t take shortcuts in operations and also must to sensitive to their customers’ time.

Rental facilities that leverage technology to enhance operations will win both with access to competitive insurance programs as well as satisfied customers.

The rental industry has historically lagged in technological advancement, but the time is now to adapt or be left behind. The old days of stacks of paperwork and loose ends will not be tolerated, especially with related regulation that is beginning to be implemented across the U.S. It’s the companies who are the pioneers and get ahead of the change that will be in the strongest position to succeed.

Cam Serigne is CEO and founder of vQuip, a digital platform for managing specialty risks. vQuip’s solution in a full-proof operating system that can mitigate the variable of human error while improving the customer experience.

These opinions are the author’s own.