Mercury Insurance’s New Exec Hire Augurs New Data Science Vision

The appointment of Simon Zhang as Chief Data and Analytics Officer supports an ongoing effort to utilize advanced data analytics to drive business growth and better meet policyholder needs.

(Image credit: Steve Harvey/Unsplash.)

Mercury Insurance (Los Angeles), a provider of property and casualty insurance, has appointed Simon Zhang to the newly-created position of Chief Data and Analytics Officer. Mercury characterizes the hire as part of an ongoing effort to utilize advanced data analytics to drive business growth, elevate the carrier’s product offerings, and better meet the needs of its policyholders.

“This newly created position is the latest in a series of investments Mercury is making to reimagine how we use data and unlock the power of our deep data resources,” comments Victor Joseph, President & COO, Mercury Insurance. “Combining our proprietary data with the kinds of new data technologies that are being developed everyday will help Mercury become an innovative market leader.”

As Chief Data Analytics Officer, Zhang’s leadership will add value to virtually every element of the Mercury data science landscape—from predictive analytics and data science, infrastructure and architecture, to data security and compliance, according to a Mercury statement.

Simon Zhang, Chief Data and Analytics Officer, Mercury Insurance.

Mercury says Zhang’s mission will be to harness Mercury’s 60-plus years of valuable data and build systems and processes within the organization to better inform the way the company does business. As this data becomes more available across Mercury’s teams, the company says it will discover better and more efficient ways of doing business. The carrier says this new position reinforces its commitment to seeking out better and more innovative ways to utilize its data assets. It will help the company transform to meet the ever-changing needs of its customers and will provide an important foundation for future success.

Accessible and Relevant

“Data is only valuable if it’s accessible and relevant. The aim of my team will be to map our data and present it in a way that can be of use to all members of the Mercury team—from product planning and customer service to human capital, marketing and underwriting,” comments Zhang.

Before joining Mercury, Zhang served as Chief Data Scientist at GrowingIO (Beijing), a company he co-founded. Prior to that, he held a leadership role at LinkedIn, where he served as senior director of business analytics. Interestingly, Mr. Zhang’s career journey began in the medical field, where he achieved success as a neurosurgeon performing more than 300 surgeries.

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Anthony R. O’Donnell // Anthony O'Donnell is Executive Editor of Insurance Innovation Reporter. For nearly two decades, he has been an observer and commentator on the use of information technology in the insurance industry, following industry trends and writing about the use of IT across all sectors of the insurance industry. He can be reached at AnthODonnell@IIReporter.com or (503) 936-2803.

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