Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina (IIANC), a trade association representing the state’s independent insurance agencies, has chosen Ascend as a preferred premium payments platform for its members.

Ascend is an insurance payments platform, which offers automated financing, collections, and payables.

The latest tie-up is aimed at providing value to payments for IIANC’s independent agency network.

It will enable affiliate referrals to Ascend’s financial products for IIANC members.

Using the solutions, start-ups are said to be able to develop their own internal processes, supported by Ascend’s technology and automated funds flow.

The collaboration will also decrease IIANC agents’ workload as well as offer a custom-made checkout system for the agencies, noted Ascend.

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IIANC COO Rebecca Shigley said: “We believe in advocating on behalf of independent agents everywhere, and this includes offering them the best possible tools and resources for success.

“Aligning ourselves with companies like Ascend opens our community up to a whole new world of streamlined and modern workflow and payments solutions – the necessary tools for our independent agents to compete and differentiate themselves from major players in insurance.”

Furthermore, the alliance intends to provide a set of webinars and resources for agents to help them grow their businesses.

Ascend strategic partnerships head Chris Peabody said: “At Ascend, we believe in empowering the IA channel with a modern payments solution while creating a modern checkout process for their clients and by doing so, enabling agencies to do what they do best, be a trusted adviser.

“Through this partnership, we are able to empower agents across the state of North Carolina.”

In January this year, Ascend received $30m in a Series A round, along with a $250m lending commitment to fund insurance premium loans.