Munich — When Micah Carr-Hill wanted to insure Chief, the labrador that helps with his son’s autism therapy, he found an ally in Munich Re, the world’s biggest reinsurer. The German company had just teamed up with a UK internet start-up to provide pet insurance with the comprehensive cover Carr-Hill needed. Munich Re’s investment in London-based Bought By Many, which helps its customers find coverage for everything from bulldogs to Kindles, is an example of how reinsurers are plowing money into niche fintech providers to boost waning profits. "Among the thousands of start-ups, some really good ones will emerge," Torsten Jeworrek, a member of Munich Re’s management board, said in an interview. "We want to be at the forefront of this." Munich Re backs more than a half-dozen fintech providers, including London-based cellphone insurer So-Sure and US home insurer Lemonade. Big players are getting more involved across the board. In 2012, insurers or reinsurers completed just one strategic...

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