1. You bring with yourself an extensive international experience developed in Europe, Japan and LatAm in the fields of art, art insurance and asset management. On the basis of your professional experience, what remarkable sign can Arte Generali leave in its business segment?
In my previous experiences in the field of art insurance I was struck by how heavy the administrative processes were, to the point that sometimes they could even depress the motivation of art specialists and jeopardize the relation with art collectors. Arte Generali allowed me to develop a new operating model, enhanced by a digital platform and fueled by a corporate culture focused on innovation and on the “Life-Time Partnership” concept. The result is something very innovative for this market segment, because it offers art collectors solutions that reduce bureaucracy and enable them to live their passion freely. To the Arte Generali clients, we provide much more than an insurance product: Concierge service and digital tools are essential components of our proposition.
2. Generali invests in this new project also with its technological know-how, betting on innovation and new technologies. Is the future key to safeguard the past?
Of course. Let me explain you how our digital platform works. We will integrate in a single web app remote evaluation service for art pieces, a private virtual gallery where our clients can “store” their collections and share them with friends and family, and 24/7 assistance. Often people ask me how we can prevent frauds by adopting a digital evaluation system. The answer is that our system is better than traditional ones in detecting counterfeits, as today the majority of art insurance policies are issued on the back of self-declarations made by clients. Arte Generali provides remote evaluations performed by a network of selected experts: Clients are requested to submit photos of the art piece as well as additional information such as the certificate of origin, if existing. If any doubt about the authenticity arises or for very pricey items, Arte Generali activates an expert for a physical check. The premium is defined amongst many parameters also by the preservation status and the origin certificates. Last, I’d like to emphasize that our digital platform adopts the most advanced data protection standards in coherence with our approach.
3. How does the protection offered by an insurer contribute to – in addition to the preservation – the development and the sharing of art?
I’d like to start answering your question by mentioning Arte Generali’s purpose, i.e. its long-term mission. Our purpose is to promote the sharing of art and creativity as values for society by taking care of the protection of any form of art and of its transmission from one generation to the next. We are convinced that owning an art piece requires that the owner pays a particular care so that the piece is safe, well preserved and restored when needed. I believe that the preservation of an art piece’s integrity is the duty of any art lover, who is a humble custodian for next generations to enjoy. With this philosophy in mind, Arte Generali aims not only to guarantee the compensation in case of claim – thus enabling the restoration when needed – but also to accompany the art collector through different phases of her or his life, advising her or him about the best preservation techniques and therefore preventing potential damages. Arte Generali is not only protection, but also and more importantly prevention, assistance and partnership. Moreover, an insured collector is more prone to lend her or his art piece for the community to enjoy it, for instance to a temporary exhibition. Last, I’d like to underline that choosing Arte Generali means joining an art community with other art lovers who share the same passion for an artist, a style or a period. This community is animated by our staff of experts, for instance through high-standing events and private exhibition tours.
4. Which are the keywords that will accompany Arte Generali’s journey?
They are our differentiating factors: passion, engagement, expertise, service, care, concierge, prevention, partnership, innovation, digitization, simplicity.
5. For Arte Generali’s launch campaign, you chose Oliviero Toscani as the ‘director’ and Maurizio Cattelan as the ‘model’. What do these two ambassadors tell?
Oliviero and Maurizio created an ironic, debunking and destabilizing campaign. This is exactly what we were looking for to generate a strong visual impact while communicating a sense of change in the art insurance business, traditionally quite conservative. Such a change is reflected by the disruption that we believe Arte Generali will bring about in the sector thanks to its unique and unprecedented features, which I have described previously. Personally, I recognize the campaign’s ironic side, as Maurizio pretends to be stealing two of his most famous artworks, including “America” which was actually stolen from a museum in England in September 2019. Cattelan himself said: “Arte Generali’s brand campaign juxtaposes the risk run by art collectors of their art pieces being stolen with the metaphorical act of stealing that every artist commits. My whole career has been based on the non-existence of originality – in other words, the ability to invent by adding to something that has been invented already, or the ability to elicit unexpected emotions by triggering emotions that one felt already before.”
1. Arte Generali was born on the back of the Generali Group’s effort as a patron to art. How does the history of Generali combine with the world of art and culture?
Arte Generali builds on two solid pillars. First, the undiscussed leadership of the Generali Group in terms of technical performance. Second, the unique artistic and cultural heritage, developed since the foundation of Generali in 1831. Throughout decades, this heritage grew thanks to direct investments in art works, which add value to our offices around the world. Also, it grew thanks to our effort in providing insurance coverage, assistance and restoration: for instance, Generali was a protagonist in the reconstruction of the legendary La Fenice theater in Venice after the two fires that destroyed it completely in 1836 and 1996. Last, the support to the world of art and culture is equally important. This support is proven by initiatives such as the partnership between Generali Deutschland and some of the most successful exhibitions in Germany, including the recent exhibition on Tiepolo at the Staatsgalerie in Stuttgart.
2. The Group’s ambition is to become Life-Time Partner to art collectors. How is this ambition translated into the evolution of Generali’s brand identity?
Generali aims to become a life-time partner to its customers. It is a true revolution in the insurance sector because, so far, insurers were mainly focused on building off-the-shelf products and managing claims – although they have always played an important role for society. Today, however, customers expect integrated and personalized insurance solutions, able to respond to the complexity of their needs and to the evolution of such needs in time. Today, insurance solutions must be enhanced by the most advanced technologies. Obviously, all of this must coexist with best-in-class quality, with the ‘human touch’ of advisors and with service excellence. Generali wants to be the first and the best insurance company to offer all of this. Clearly, our new approach based on prevention, assistance and partnership applies even to art collectors. For example, we designed an app that provides Arte Generali customers with, among other benefits, continuous assistance and advice on how to prevent damages to their art pieces.
3. Generali expands its offering through a project that becomes a key component of the Generali 2021 strategic plan. What are your expectations?
We expect a robust growth of the global art insurance market. Worldwide, we estimate that insurance revenues in this segment will rise by 6% on average per year, to reach US$ 2.3 billion in 2022. Furthermore, this segment boasts a significantly higher profitability than insurance business’s average. In this scenario, we are convinced Arte Generali can expand meaningfully and become one of the top-three specialized players in Europe in five years. In the longer term, we believe Arte Generali will become the market leader.
4. What is the startup’s target? Which type of clientele chooses this option?
Arte Generali is primarily targeted at individual customers – private collectors of art pieces with a cumulative value above €500,000. These are customers with sophisticated needs that we meet by offering ‘concierge’ service which goes well beyond the traditional insurance coverage to include, among other things, restoration, transportation and preservation of art works. We are the only insurer in the market able to combine the insurance product, assistance and digital tools.
5. The starting block of the new global unit is Germany. What is the role of art in this geography and which markets will be included in the expansion plan?
According to the most recent estimates, Germany is the second largest market in the world for art insurance, after the United States. This proves the great interest for art among German residents, further demonstrated by many galleries and museums of exceptional value that operate in this country and are supported by associations of ‘friends’ which stand out for their vivacity and creative vision. Arte Generali is up and running in Germany and it will soon be operating in France, Austria and Italy, and other European and global markets afterwards.
Arte Generali was presented on November 25, 2019, at an exclusive event at the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich. Almost 300 art lovers attended the event. Jean Gazançon, CEO of Arte Generali, Giovanni Liverani, CEO of Generali Deutschland and global sponsor of Arte Generali and Oliviero Toscani, creative director of Arte Generali’s brand were among the speakers of the night. Maurizio Cattelan, the Italian artist considered as the ‘joker’ of the world’s art scene, who serves as testimonial of Arte Generali, also attended the event.
“Arte Generali not only offers comprehensive insurance protection for art objects, but also unique innovations” said Jean Gazançon. “Complemented by our concierge service and an exclusive app featuring remote evaluations, art collectors receive an optimal protection of their art objects and at the same time become a member of an exclusive art community.”
With Arte Generali, art collectors have the chance to feel part of a community who shares the same passion for art and the same mindset on how to handle and protect art pieces with the aim of passing them over to the future generations. Arte Generali commits to nurture this community, for instance by facilitating physical and digital get-togethers such as encounters with inspiring artists. The PIN Freunde – the association of supporters of the Pinakothek der Moderne – is a living proof of the importance of community in the world of art. Most of the 300 attendees at the launch event were members of the PIN Freunde.
The event was also the occasion to present an important project that Arte Generali will support in cooperation with the PIN Freunde and the Technical University of Munich: the initiative "Experience in Action - DesignBuild in architecture education". Architecture students have the chance to design a temporary pavilion next to the museum to be built in 2020. The pavilion will become an experimental space for art and architecture and will house workshops for children, students and adults; discussion groups; exhibitions and other events.
On November 12, 2019, Arte Generali was presented at a global launch event held in the Generali Tower in CityLife, Milan, Italy. Generali Group CEO Philippe Donnet, Generali Deutschland CEO and global sponsor of Arte Generali Giovanni Liverani, Arte Generali CEO Jean Gazançon, Creative Director Oliviero Toscani, and artist & testimonial Maurizio Cattelan attended the event and discussed the brand identity of the new unit dedicated to art collectors.
“I am very glad to announce the launch of Arte Generali, a milestone in the execution of Generali 2021. With Arte Generali, we start a new chapter in Generali’s history within the insurance industry. Furthermore, Arte Generali resonates strongly with Generali’s expertise, legacy and DNA as it can build on the Group’s leadership in terms of technical insurance performance and on its tradition as a patron to the arts and the culture” said Philippe Donnet, Generali Group CEO.