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James Thom

SVP, Chief Product Officer

“Vertafore is on a mission to innovate, simplify, and automate insurance distribution, while working closely with our customers across the value chain. I love the insurance industry and working with independent agents to modernize their business with innovative InsurTech solutions.

James joined Vertafore in 2017 to lead Corporate Development and Strategy, shepherding the company through major acquisitions and a transition in ownership to Roper Technologies. After 3+ years of steering our growth in that role, he now oversees the Product Management organization as Chief Product Officer. With extensive experience in strategy, technology, and insurance, James and his team are driving Vertafore’s leadership position in Insurance Technology.

Previously, James was a strategy consultant at McKinsey & Company in its Seattle, New York, and San Francisco offices, supporting companies in developing their strategic visions and executing commercial strategies, with a focus on financial services. James also served in a variety of finance and strategy roles in the telecommunications industry with Telus Communications, a leading Canadian telecommunications company.

James' 5 Fast Facts

1. What do you love most about your role at Vertafore?

Working with and listening to our clients. I’ve worked across multiple industries and have never found a group as engaged and passionate as the independent agent. Not only are they amazing business people, they are also great people overall who really deliver for their clients and communities. Our customers are great partners to us and we strive to be the best possible partner for them.

2. How did you get into the InsurTech business?

I’ve always had a deep interest in the topic of risk and the history/ideas behind insurance. In my years at McKinsey & Company I served varying industries, but spent much of my time at the intersection of financial services and technology. When I learned about Vertafore, the transformation that the company was going through and the opportunity to innovate the insurance distribution channel, it felt like a natural fit.

3. What are you most excited about for the future of InsurTech?

I strongly believe in the role and power of the independent agent – you will never find a group more dedicated to their clients. What I’m most excited for is helping them get out of the mundane, transactional processes that tie down their businesses and allow them to focus on what matters to them most – serving and advising their clients. There is so much potential in AI, automation, and data to improve the experience of employees and the end-insured.

4. What’s your idea of the perfect weekend?

A getaway with my wife and kids. I love exploring new places and have a passion for food and drink. A walk through a new city or countryside and a quality meal is how I recharge.

5. I’m coming to visit you! What are your favorite/must-do things in your city?

There is so much to do in Denver, but if someone is coming in for the first time you head to the mountains. There’s nothing quite like fishing, hiking, or skiing in the Rockies. For a quick trip, a visit to Red Rocks can help you appreciate how special Denver can be.

Education
Masters in Business Administration from Harvard Business School
Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Victoria
Experience
  • SVP, Corporate Development and Strategy, Vertafore
  • Associate Partner, McKinsey & Company
  • Corporate Development Advisor, Telus Communications