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Markel Insurances

01 Apr 2020

The impact of the Coronavirus on the UK tech sector

We are living in a time of global change, on all levels. Every single one of us has felt the impact of the coronavirus on our lives. Those in the technology sector are leading the way in helping the nation.

Whether it’s diversifying product lines to assist with the increasing requirement for health equipment, or ensuring the mental stability of those in self-isolation is maintained.

  • Technology investments in last year increased by 44% to over £10billiion in the UK, making it the number one tech nation in Europe (Tech Nation 2020)

  • What’s more, in 2019, worldwide investment in HealthTech reached £8.7 billion.

These are both reassuring facts to know that we have solid foundations as a nation to react to this change.

Diversification and its insurance challenge

We are seeing well-known brands such as GTech stating on their website medical ventilator design details.


All made with good intention, but what are the implications of diversification and its impact on product liability in the insurance industry?

We may see companies change their lines of business to help in the battle against Covid-19. But this presents challenges in ensuring the insured has the right level of experience to produce the new products and what the level of liability issue for a defective product would be. This is where the humanitarian responsibility and the product liability collide.

Exemptions from devices regulations

With the Prime Minister encouraging our industries to step up and help with the shortfall of necessary equipment in this pandemic, the MRHA have also made allowances. During the Covid-19 outbreak, the MRHA may authorise non-CE marked equipment and devices to help this health situation.
Three dedicated emails have been set up by the Government should a company be in a position to support:

Tech Recruitment

Willingness to invest into tech companies will be dependent on the length of time the forced isolation will last for, and it is thought it will be companies looking to fulfil a need in the short term. 

A specialist tech recruitment company recently noted that of the entire UK tech-related contract roles created in the last few weeks, 18% were for programmers and 13% were for specialists and support staff. This is a direct response to the remote working that we are now seeing, resulting in us flexing our system capabilities. 

Groups are being formed to build communities of technologists, designers, user researchers, marketers and any like-minded individuals with product delivery skills to identify pandemic solutions. For example, a Coronavirus Tech Handbook is being built by a team called Tech for UK, as well as the COVID Emergency Response Initiative.

One Nation United

We are all joined together in this as one, showing in a time of adversity that we truly are a great nation.

To see more COVID-19 related content and how Markel UK are assisting our poliyholder and brokers, visit the COVID-19 Hub.

Our COVID-19 Hub contains a range of information and resources to best support our clients during this difficult time. To receive the latest news and insights by email sign-up here.

Markel brokers and policyholders also have access to our Law hub, providing thousands of DIY contracts, forms guides and links to valuable resources for businesses needing assistance with the everyday running of their organisations.

Tagged Technology & Communications Biomedical and life science insurance COVID-19
Next article in series

01 Apr 2020

COVID-19: Government support for care businesses