Press Release

Footy fans to get a virtual thrill

Football fans will this week get the chance to experience the technology being explored by insurers to create safer roads and faster disaster responses as QBE launches a first of its kind virtual reality (VR) experience with the Sydney Swans.

The ASX-listed insurer is investigating how VR, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, drones and telematics can help deliver benefits to consumers, businesses and the broader community as it increases its focus on innovation and new technology.

To demonstrate the technology in action, QBE collaborated with partner of 32 years, the Sydney Swans, to create Swans360⁰ - made possible by QBE, a fan experience that will officially launch at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) this Sunday.

QBE Chief Customer Officer, Bettina Pidcock, said the move was in line with the business’ push to embrace innovation to become a more customer-centric organisation.

“Globally, we’re investing $50 million in insurtech initiatives through QBE Ventures, while locally we’re helping grow the insurtech community through partnerships with Insurtech Australia and startup hub Stone & Chalk.

“Virtual reality has the ability to put people in a situation without any of the associated risk.

“While we continue to look at the applications of VR for insurance, we saw this as an opportunity to demonstrate the power of the technology to our customers and Swans fans.”

Virtual reality has the potential to be a game changer in insurance, said Ms Pidcock.

“From helping us drive more safely to modelling catastrophe relief scenarios, we believe new technology will help create better customer outcomes. We’re not there yet, but that’s the long game we’re playing.”

The fully immersive experience takes the viewer behind the scenes, putting them in the shoes of the players.

Fans will step in to a mini SCG replica, complete with the iconic clock tower and swivel stadium seating for up to seven viewers, who will be transported into a match day experience in the shoes of the players.

Utilising revolutionary VR technology and techniques, the film takes the viewer deep inside the sheds as the Swans prepare to take the field.

The film was shot at Sydney’s Round 14 clash with Essendon, which the Swans won in the dying seconds by just one point.

Hosted by Sydney Swans great Michael O’Loughlin, viewers find themselves in the inner sanctum of the change rooms, joining the final huddle with the coach and feeling the thrill of running out onto the SCG with the team.

After the final siren, they experience the exhilaration of winning during one of the best comebacks in the club’s history.

“For 32 years, we’ve been like the 23rd player in the team, so this enables fans to step into our shoes and have a truly immersive match day experience,” said Ms Pidcock.

Swans360⁰ - made possible by QBE was a collaborative effort between QBE, Sydney Swans, Rapid Films, Octagon and Milk Money, with the support of the AFL and Channel Seven.

Swans360⁰ will officially launch at the SCG this Sunday, 1 April, ahead of the Swans’ first home game of the year.

View the 90sec Behind the Scenes video

View the 30sec VR teaser

For further information please contact:
Kate Sinclair
External Communications Manager - QBE Corporate Communications
Phone: +61 435 688 785