Global independent claims management firm Crawford & Co. said it has completed the acquisition of a majority interest in WeGoLook, an online and mobile inspection firm that calls itself the “Uber of inspections.”
Crawford said it agreed to pay $36.125 million for an 85 percent stake in WeGoLook, which is based in Oklahoma. The acquisition was approved in early December by both companies’ boards of directors.
“The Crawford-WeGoLook alliance propels us to the forefront of the industry and will transform the way we conduct business,” said Harsha V. Agadi, Crawford president and chief executive officer. “Combining Crawford’s global footprint, established client relationships, and industry longevity with WeGoLook’s groundbreaking technology and streamlined processes opens up endless possibilities.”
WeGoLook provides on-demand field inspection and verification services. Its web and mobile platform enables more than 30,000 mobile workers known as “lookers” to collect and verify information using their smartphone cameras. They can perform same-day vehicle, heavy equipment and building inspections for insurance and lending firms, as well as provide notary services and verify auction items. The firm also handles custom tasks for businesses and consumers. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Its website claims it has 100 employees and 8,000 unique customers. WeGoLook recently began adding “lookers” in Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia.
The company was formed in 2009 by Robin Smith, current CEO, and friend Mark Claywood, as a tasking service that connected eBay shoppers with local people who would go inspect the items they wanted to buy.
The acquisition aligns with Crawford Innovative Ventures, a Crawford entity created to invest in strategic acquisitions. The unit is led by Ken Fraser, executive vice president, Crawford’s chief strategic and development officer.
“The WeGoLook partnership is the first majority acquisition of Crawford Innovative Ventures and signifies a remarkable shift in Crawford’s strategic position in the market,” Fraser said. “Crawford’s new direction promises to revolutionize our claims handling process and positions Crawford to lead the global transformation and digitalization of claims management.”
Another on-demand claims service, called DropIn, allows a claims adjuster to dispatch a person with a smartphone —called a Droperator— to a location to take photos and live video of a loss situation.
Source: Crawford & Co.