‘Mr Young And Powerful’ Wants To Dominate Insurance Business For Medical Marijuana, Drones
In addition to business leadership, Bryant is an activist for racial equality:
- He co-founded the New York Caucus for Political Action, a political action committee (PAC) launched to provide a platform for people of color with political ambitions.
- He’s chairman of The Young & Powerful Group, a civic nonprofit group of business professionals dedicated to uplifting New Yorkers in the fight for equality and social justice. “We intend to continue our fight against the injustices throughout disadvantaged communities,” Bryant said.
- Bryant is also vice president of finance for the New York State Black Chamber of Commerce.
“Often, men of color are not acknowledged for the positive impact they have on society or the advancements made in their respective career fields,” Bryant said in a Black Enterprise interview. “It’s important we are aware of their achievements, which also provides inspiration to our younger generation.”
“If I lost a (wrestling) match when my father came to see me wrestle, he would walk out of the gymnasium, and I would have to catch the bus home. He wanted to make sure I felt uncomfortable with losing. When I arrived home and after completing my homework, I’d train in our basement for two hours with weights. Every time I lost a wrestling match, that became a ritual. Whenever I am faced with a setback now, my natural response is to get stronger.”
Bryant spoke to Moguldom about his career trajectory, and why he is entering the medical marijuana and drone insurance markets.
Bryant Arthur: Technology is vital in our industry. It allows us to transact business around the world without incurring heavy expenses or losing the most precious commodity — time. By the advancement of technology, we are able to reach the same clientele of our largest competitors at a faster pace.
Moguldom: You opened a branch in the Dominican Republic to enter the Caribbean marketplace. You said “As a minority-owned business, there haven’t been many other businesses in our space that are making these strides.” Please explain more.
Bryant Arthur: Most minority-owned firms lack the capital and resources to transact business on a national or global scale. It’s really due to the opportunities not being equally provided to us and having to go through numerous hurdles to obtain the necessary information to grow. Our expansion model into the Caribbean is credited to my father. He was the architect and visionary behind the move. He has always stated that one should always aspire to do business beyond the five-mile radius of his/her own office. Under his guidance, we went from the five-mile radius, to across state lines, across the country and now in the Caribbean.
Moguldom: What type of risks are there in medical marijuana and drone industries that people may not have thought about?
Bryant Arthur: As respects to the medical marijuana, our industry sectors include (but not limited to) ancillary cannabis businesses, cannabis-infused product manufacturers, marijuana dispensaries, marijuana events, marijuana growers, marijuana landlords and medical marijuana physicians.
Most risks that exist that people may not recognize really pertain to knowing your state’s medical marijuana legislation, and how it impacts insurers. For example, some states that have legalized medical marijuana require insurers to reimburse claimants for their spend on the drug, while other jurisdictions prohibit doing so. The denial of coverage for that expense can create a hefty monetary burden.
As respects to the drone industry, I would make sure the immediate potential hazards are addressed before securing coverage: loss or damage to the (drone) and associated equipment, coverage for aircraft operators including other non-pilot, on-ground crew, manufacturer product liability, third-party legal liability and premises liability.
Moguldom: What things would you not cover in the medical marijuana and drone industries?
Bryant Arthur: In the insurance industry, many policies exclude coverage for “illegal activities,” “criminal acts” and “intentional behavior.” These exclusions usually apply to intentional violations of the law compared to negligent violations. However, any violation of the law can potentially exclude coverage regardless of the product or service being insured. As it pertains to both the medical marijuana and drone industry, I would make sure the business is compliant with federal and state law to avoid any immediate possibility of coverage denial.
Moguldom: What’s it like to be in these relatively new markets of medical marijuana and drone insurance?
Bryant Arthur: Entering the medical marijuana and drone industries has been rewarding. By keeping my finger on the pulse of the insurance industry, I realized there will usually be a temporary void that’ll need to be filled as technology and healthcare evolves. There is a small window of time before a new industry is saturated with competition. As states began legalizing the use of marijuana for medicinal purpose, I knew the legislation would impact the insurance industry and create entrepreneurs and investors in that space. The same goes for drones as legislation permitted the manufacture and use of unmanned aerial vehicles.
Moguldom: How regulated are the medical marijuana and drone industries? How will this affect the way you do business?
Bryant Arthur: Both industries are properly regulated to ensure consumer and patient protection. We usually make sure a business is compliant with state and federal laws during the underwriting process when coverage is requested.