Cigna links up with upstart Oscar for small business health insurance

Healthcare Dive | January 14, 2020

Cigna is partnering with tech-savvy payer startup Oscar Health to jointly sell commercial health plans to small businesses as the Bloomfield, Connecticut-based payer looks to capitalize on Oscar's simplified strategy to expand its footprint in the small group market. The partnership, branded as "Cigna + Oscar," includes integrated medical, behavioral and pharmacy services along with access to a high-performing network of providers. The two payers will share risk under a reinsurance agreement. The co-branded plans will launch in select markets this year pending regulatory approvals.

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With all this information, we’re moving in the right direction -- right? Then why do I still feel like access to capital is still so difficult for the entrepreneurs, small-business owners and franchisees we serve? Has access to capital really improved for the main street American small businesses?


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MARKETING AND NETWORKING

Wrapmate makes it easier for franchises to brand their vehicles

Wrapmate | September 29, 2022

Wrapmate is excited to announce that it's bringing its vast network of over 1,400 vehicle graphics professionals to franchisors nationwide in an all-new product offering for franchises to receive vehicle wraps for all their company vehicles across all U.S. markets. Now, franchisors nationwide can wrap anywhere from one to 10,000 vehicles quickly and efficiently, in every major market.Wrapmate's Franchise Wraps and Graphics Program meets franchises where they're at with an out-of-the-box solution to handle all things graphics. Entrepreneurs enter the franchise business with the expectations of marketing and operations already being pre-set and on autopilot. Franchises can now have their mind at ease knowing that wrapping franchisee vehicles is just as easy. The core components of Wrapmate's turnkey program provides all U.S.-based franchisors with flexible pricing, branding consistency, standardized logistics and nationwide installation coverage for wraps & graphics on any vehicle type or quantity. Wrapmate's flexible pricing structure ensures zero costs are charged to the corporate entity, including no setup costs or monthly management fees. Franchisors are simply responsible for sharing the vehicle graphics program to their franchisees, and Wrapmate handles everything else. Franchisors not only benefit from beautiful vehicle branding and endless marketing value, but a promising strategy for fueling additional growth across current and new franchisee markets. Included in the program comes a ready-to-use ordering platform where franchisees can visit a co-branded website to choose their vehicle, graphic size, creative theme and then instantly place an order for new vehicle graphics. Wrapmate can also facilitate other large format printing and installation like window signage, wall murals and floor graphics at any or all franchisee locations. "We are beyond excited to provide franchisors across all U.S. markets with the effortless ability to offer wraps and graphic products to their franchisees, no matter where they are located, Thanks to Wrapmate's logistical prowess behind-the-scenes, we can ensure color consistency, branding perfection and flawless installation across every single franchisee's wrap project." Javier Lozano Jr., Chief Marketing Officer of Wrapmate Jeremy Seiley, a franchisee of That 1 Painter based in Houston, Texas, says, Working with Wrapmate to put wraps on both my franchise vehicles has been incredibly simple and streamlined. Since getting my wraps completed, I literally have potential customers approaching my vehicles on a daily basis asking for price quotes and it's grown my sales pipeline substantially. Franchisees, in many cases small business owners, are generally not familiar with how onsite and offsite graphics have a very positive impact on the business growth, nor do they know where to go to get these solutions. A one stop shop for graphics, facilitates the adoption of 3M trusted graphic solutions in this market segment, hence continuing to grow the overall graphics industry, shares Carolina Bautista-Brown, 3M Segment Marketing Senior Manager. About Wrapmate Wrapmate is an all-in-one digital platform for business owners and consumers to get their vehicle wraps & graphics projects designed, produced and installed in any city across the U.S. Utilizing Wrapmate's advanced technologies, customers can visualize, purchase and even finance their vehicle graphics in the simplest way possible. Additionally, Wrapmate supports a nationwide network of over 1,400 vetted graphic professionals known as Wrapmate Pros, providing them with local customer projects and solutions to grow their business. To learn more, visit wrapmate.com. About 3M 3M believes science helps create a brighter world for everyone. By unlocking the power of people, ideas and science to reimagine what's possible, our global team uniquely addresses the opportunities and challenges of our customers, communities, and planet. Learn how we're working to improve lives and make what's

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SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

Outreach Team Selected to Support Local Small Businesses

Community Business Connector | October 07, 2022

The Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, the Port of Seattle, and King County announced today that seven community organizations would serve local small businesses through the Community Business Connector (CBC) program These organizations, identified as Connectors, will serve small businesses in five geographic hubs in King County through a targeted outreach program. Connectors will provide access to available business resources to help them sustain and grow their enterprises. A review panel selected the Connector finalist following a competitive application process. Seven connectors, in the first phase of this pilot program, will ease the way for small businesses across King County to connect with advisors and access resources for business recovery. Connectors will receive a one-time funding award from $30,000 to $40,000 over 12 months as part of the pilot program. Those selected include the following. Lake City Collective OneEastside Spark Growing Contigo, LLC International Rescue Committee Indian American Community Services Kent Chamber of Commerce SnoValley Chamber The Chamber's team of Connectors utilizes an online ticket system to connect with business owners directly. Connectors provide referral options to lenders, small business development centers, and other helpful resources. The Port of Seattle invested $650,000 in community-based partnerships to open doors for ethnic businesses that anchor our communities and neighborhoods, Port of Seattle Commissioner Hamdi Mohamed. "Helping small companies tap resources is vital as the region grows amid uncertain economic conditions locally and globally. Connectors will make the region's small business support ecosystem more accommodating and inclusive by building relationships with businesses facing challenges due to linguistic, cultural, and geographic barriers. "Companies owned by people of color, and those based in rural communities have faced higher barriers to accessing capital, receiving state and local relief funding, and pivoting to online sales ,We are committing $500,000 from King County COVID-19 Local Recovery Funds to ensure that small businesses throughout King County can get the direct support and resources they need " Seattle Metro Chamber CEO Rachel Smith

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TECHNOLOGY, SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

CyberCatch and Arizona Small Business Association Announce Partnership to Help Small Businesses in Arizona Mitigate Cyber Risk

CyberCatch | September 22, 2022

CyberCatch, today, jointly announced with the Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA), a strategic partnership to enable Arizona's small businesses to quickly and easily implement necessary cyber security controls for digital success.According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are more than 590,000 small businesses (those with fewer than 500 employees) in Arizona, and these businesses employ nearly 43.5% of the state's private workforce. Small businesses are the growth engine of Arizona's economy, and this partnership provides a valuable tool for continued success,said Debbie Hann, Chief Operating Officer, ASBA. We are delighted to partner with CyberCatch to keep Arizona's small businesses one step ahead of cyber threats, so they can continue to grow and succeed digitally. Nearly all small businesses are digital these days, and need to stay proactive, said Hann.ASBA is pleased to take a leadership position with this program and announce a new ASBA membership benefit in the form of a subscription to CyberCatch, at a discount. CyberCatch's patented, innovative, cybersecurity Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution is specifically designed for small businesses and enables quick and easy implementation of all necessary controls for continuous cyber security. The SaaS solution automatically and continuously tests cyber security controls to detect security holes for prompt remediation so attackers cannot exploit and ensures ongoing compliance and cyber risk mitigation. "CyberCatch is a one-stop-shop for small businesses. We are honored to partner with ASBA. Our compliments to ASBA for their foresight and forward thinking to recognize cyber risk as a key threat to small businesses in Arizona and to partner with us to craft a valuable and timely solution for their members and prospective members to assure their continued success." Sai Huda, founder, chairman and CEO, CyberCatch. The root cause of data thefts and ransomware is security holes which derive from missing or ineffective cybersecurity controls that the small business is unaware of," said Huda. "Small businesses have limited resources and generally don't know what cyber security controls to implement or how to implement them in order to be secure from cyber threats, and now must comply with new requirements such as Zero Trust. ASBA and CyberCatch aim to fill those gaps in small business knowledge, with this innovative new partnership. This member benefit gives small businesses immediate savings and continual digital compliance and security. To learn more about this benefit, visit website. About Arizona Small Business Association The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) was founded in 1973 and serves as the collective voice of small businesses in Arizona by driving a better environment for all of us to do business. Today, ASBA is focused on delivering statewide education, mentoring, networking, and advocacy programs, providing innovative entrepreneurs with the resources necessary to grow and evolve in an ever-changing marketplace. For more information, visit website. About CyberCatch CyberCatch is a unique, patented cybersecurity Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) company that protects small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) from cyberattacks by focusing on the root cause why SMBs fall victim: security holes. It provides an innovative cloud-based SaaS platform coupled with deep subject matter expertise to help SMBs implement just the right type and amount of cybersecurity controls. The platform then performs automated testing of controls from three dimensions: outside-in, inside-out and social engineering. It generates the Cyber Breach Score to continuously measure cyber risk and finds security holes and guides the SMB to fix them promptly, so attackers can't exploit any missing or broken controls to break in and steal data or infect ransomware. CyberCatch's continuous value proposition:

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FINANCE, BUSINESS STRATEGY

Counterpart Launches AI-Powered Crime Coverage For Small Businesses Backed by Aspen Insurance

Counterpart | September 16, 2022

Counterpart, the AI-driven management liability insurtech for small businesses, today announced the launch of Crime insurance. The policy can be purchased on a standalone basis or packaged with its existing Directors & Officers, Employment Practices, and Fiduciary insurance lines. Backed by Aspen, the Crime insurance expansion reinforces Counterpart’s commitment to using its cutting-edge technology to address critical exposures of small businesses.Employee theft costs businesses $50 billion annually, and costs are rising at a rate of 15% per year, according to the U.S Department of Commerce. The new offering helps identify employee theft and social engineering perils by utilizing Counterpart’s proprietary machine learning-based underwriting system, which includes employee sentiment analysis, as well as proactive risk mitigation guidelines. “Small businesses often lack the internal auditing and risk management capabilities of larger businesses, which can make them more susceptible to Crime risk. Our extensive underwriting experience, proprietary data infrastructure, and increased market presence have enabled us to craft a Crime product that complements our existing insurance lines,We are grateful for the continued support of the well-respected team at Aspen, along with many of our broker partners, who have helped us develop a very competitive product.” Mike Levins, Head of Insurance at Counterpart Crime insurance is available for small businesses with less than 250 employees and less than $100 million in revenue and total assets through Counterpart’s wholesale broker partners. “Counterpart continues to impress CRC Group and the brokerage community with its effective and efficient quoting and binding tools. Now, with their Crime capabilities, we can rely on Counterpart as a one-stop shop for comprehensive management liability coverage for our valued Insureds,” said Dan Lazarz, Director, CRC - ExecPro Group. “Counterpart has established an impressive track record of innovation,” said Zac Clammer, Executive Vice President, Management Liability at Aspen. “We are pleased to continue developing our partnerships with Counterpart across the growing portfolio of excess and primary small business insurance products that we are bringing to market.” Small businesses should contact their broker about Counterpart insurance coverage and can learn more about Counterpart’s products and services by visiting: yourcounterpart.com About Counterpart Counterpart is an AI-driven management liability insurance solution for the 21st century workplace. The company offers modern Directors & Officers, Employment Practices, Excess and Fiduciary products for small businesses. Through data mining and advanced analytics, the company's rating systems measure risk more efficiently while requiring less information from the broker and applicant. Counterpart’s distinctive approach to underwriting is complemented by a suite of products and services that help brokers and insureds proactively manage exposures throughout the term of the policy. For more information, visit yourcounterpart.com About Aspen Insurance Holdings Limited Aspen provides insurance and reinsurance coverage to clients in various domestic and global markets through wholly-owned subsidiaries and offices in Australia, Bermuda, Canada, Singapore, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. For the year ended December 31, 2021, Aspen reported $13.8 billion in total assets, $7.6 billion in gross reserves, $2.8 billion in total shareholders’ equity, and $3.9 billion in gross written premiums. Aspen's operating subsidiaries have been assigned a rating of “A-” (Strong) by Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and an “A” (“Excellent”) by A.M. Best Company Inc.

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Spotlight

With all this information, we’re moving in the right direction -- right? Then why do I still feel like access to capital is still so difficult for the entrepreneurs, small-business owners and franchisees we serve? Has access to capital really improved for the main street American small businesses?

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