Even before COVID-19, bad debts were the cause of one in three corporate insolvencies in Germany, and the proportion of companies that were only paid by their customers with payment delays beyond the agreed payment target was 85%. “Nevertheless, it is still currently about 85-90% of companies that do not secure their receivables to be settled on payment terms. And that, although they become thereby directly the lender of their customers and carry the complete default risk”, so co-founder Karsten Bahns.
After years of economic growth with low insolvency figures, however, the current developments surrounding COVID-19 have noticeably heightened the risk awareness of companies with regard to their debtor and receivables management. Companies that have not previously had credit insurance are now increasingly looking for flexible, individual solutions to protect themselves against bad debt losses. Companies that already have credit insurance, on the other hand, often also need quick and simple supplements for insurance coverage that has been rejected or cancelled by their primary insurer or that has not been sufficiently underwritten.
In the existing credit insurance market, such solutions are very inadequate and cannot even be found in digital form. The credit insurance industry predominantly offers framework contracts, with which the entire turnover of a company is to be insured. This discourages many companies, as it is perceived as poorly suited to their needs, costly and complicated. Most companies are looking for selective solutions. These are offered by crebita.
crebita takes a new approach and is the first digital credit insurance solution for companies based in Germany to secure receivables from individual customers in Germany and abroad with real-time decisions and immediate policy documentation. “We want to give companies, but especially SMEs, a way to make their own risks more predictable and to reduce potentially existential threats to them in a simple way.”, elaborates co-founder Dominik Menn.
The challenge was to simplify and reduce the complexity of taking out credit insurance so that it could be completed online in just a few minutes and with just a few details about the risk, at any time and from anywhere. “Simplicity and speed were the trump cards,” reports co-founder Karsten Bahns. With crebita, affiliated companies now have the option, after identifying their customer to be insured online, of configuring their insurance cover themselves in line with their needs according to term, deductible and thus in terms of premium. And all this with state-of-the-art contract terms and flexible cancellation options. The contract is also concluded online and the insurance policy with immediate coverage for future deliveries and services is stored in the crebita account as a pdf seconds later. In addition, the insurance can not only secure the company’s own liquidity through the possible indemnity payment, but can also be used to gain new liquidity by assigning the indemnity payment, e.g. to a factor.
crebita now has over 500+ registered companies, many of which regularly use the two products crebita.select and crebita.plus to supplement their accounts receivable management. Customers are smaller SMEs as well as companies with billions in sales. crebita has established itself as a complementary solution in the credit insurance market and has brought close to €100 million of insurance volume to the market to date. “This is really fun” or “I never thought credit insurance could be so easy and flexible” are examples of customer reactions.
The founders of crebita are proven credit insurance and factoring experts and have a total of almost 100 years of personal market experience in this segment. This has already been used for many cooperations with brokers, associations, banks, etc. In addition, crebita relies on online marketing to further increase its reach and awareness.
Risk carrier for crebita products is R+V Allgemeine Versicherung AG, part of R+V Versicherung AG from Wiesbaden, a strong and reliable partner.
Managing directors, co-founders and idea providers of crebita are Karsten Bahns and Dominik Menn. After years of experience in the credit insurance industry at Euler Hermes, Atradius, R+V and the specialist broker CFG Finance, they co-founded crebita in 2018, which has been active in the market since the beginning of 2019.