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WASHINGTON, May 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Weather Analytics LLC, a leading provider of risk information for insurance carriers, today announced it has acquired and merged with Athenium Inc. Weather Analytics also announced today it is investing more than $25 million to build new decision-support software for insurers, enabled by artificial intelligence and computer-vision capabilities.

Bill Pardue, who co-founded Weather Analytics LLC and now is Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of the merged companies, said both the Athenium acquisition and the $25 million additional investment will expand greatly insurers' current cost-effective choices for advanced decision support.

"Carriers deserve intelligent solutions to get more informed insights, and these solutions will come from additional specialized products for risk selection and pricing," Pardue said. "Insurers also want the choice of a single risk selection and pricing provider who can marry those capabilities with third-party content and operational insights. Merged with Athenium, we now are in a great position to make that happen for customers."

Athenium software currently helps carriers assess performance of both claims and underwriting, noted Joe Kislo, CEO & President of Athenium Inc. "We have helped clients identify more than half a billion dollars of claims and underwriting opportunities since 2010. With this union of our companies, we can apply Weather Analytics' data-science expertise to boost further both operational savings and insights for clients."

"Increasingly over the next two years," Kislo added, "Weather Analytics and Athenium together will become the market-leading information solution for carriers. Our products will deliver for a broad set of insurers' business lines – property, workers' compensation, automotive, and general and professional liability."

Employees at the combined company now total more than 100 people, and recruiting is accelerating for more scientists and technologists. They will continue to work at company offices in Washington, DC, Waltham, MA, and Dover, NH. "The combined entity will operate as 'Athenium Analytics,' with unified web sites and branding, beginning this summer," Kislo said.

Dr. Ellen Cousins, Chief Scientist for the combined companies, noted that Weather Analytics already has expanded solutions beyond weather, by analyzing many previously under-modeled risks – from commercial auto losses, to food security, to the spread of infectious diseases.

Dr. Cousins said the $25 million program for new initiatives will fund creation and applications of probabilistic models to assist insurers. "In the natural-hazard realm, we will assess risks of inland flooding, earthquakes, and wildfire," said Dr. Cousins.

"These new programs will include advanced mobile applications for crop insurance, tools to more efficiently insure small businesses, and models to assess risk in workers' comp for diverse business classifications," Dr. Cousins added. "There also will be new, synergistic solutions involving Athenium products," she said.

"For example, starting this summer, clients using Athenium tools will be able to validate and model weather-related damage claims by using Weather Analytics reporting capabilities," Dr. Cousins said.

"Other major new capabilities in development include deep machine learning for computer recognition of structural objects," said Chris Skarinka, President and cofounder of Weather Analytics. "Computer vision is already beginning to help underwriters drive down costs and improve effectiveness of structural inspections and damageability assessments," Skarinka added.

"Innovative features to identify roof and property attributes for underwriters will generate imaging analytics and damageability models for a fraction of the expense from current providers," he said.

"Together, the two firms now will serve more than 65 insurance carriers and reinsurers, plus financial traders, and the U.S. Intelligence and Defense Communities," Skarinka said.

Weather Analytics aids insurance carriers and risk managers with decisive and reliable business intelligence through intuitive, easy-to-use web applications. Powered by over four decades of rationalized, gap-free, global, weather data, Weather Analytics is the premier meteorological data analysis company on a global scale. Our meteorologists and data scientists deliver rich, predictive insights impacting a range of fields, including property, crop, auto, and maritime activity.

Weather Analytics LLC was founded in 2012 and is a portfolio company of In-Q-Tel, the private venture firm serving the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency and the broader intelligence community.

Athenium delivers exceptional performance improvement solutions that optimize the quality assurance process for insurers worldwide. Our innovative measurement and analytics solutions provide our customers with meaningful, timely, and actionable performance information they can trust for deeper insight and better-informed decision making.

Athenium was founded in 1997 with the goal of developing best-in-class tools that would lead organizations to better problem-solving and more efficient operations. Customers consistently experience better reviews for quality assurance, reduced leakage, and positive movement toward to their performance goals.
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