Google Ready for a Second Pass at Insurance?

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Google is once again exploring the periphery of the insurance industry, according to a recent Reuters report.

The news service cites remarks from a Monte Carlo press conference this week by Nick Leeder, managing director of Google France, who said during a panel discussion that the company has "been working with insurers in France like AXA and Allianz to develop bundles of products which blend technology and hardware with insurance," according to the report.

Specifically, there are opportunities for insurers to leverage the Google-owned smart home device company Nest, Leeder said.

After closing the Google Compare auto insurance aggregator, which shut down earlier this year after only about a year of operation in the U.S., so far there is no indication that Google plans to offer insurance coverage directly. As Novarica's Matt Josefowicz said earlier this year, Google's exit from the aggregation business never meant that the company meant to abandon insurance forever. The company clearly sees synergy between its offerings and those of insurance carriers -- and Compare demonstrates its willingness to test ideas.

"They may have realized it’s a better business for them to sell supplies than take the field themselves," Josefowicz said.

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