Insurance & Insurtech Investment News – January 2023
Happy February Insurtech Boffins! Every month ITC DIA Europe brings you the latest investments from the world of insurtech and this month is no different. We’re happy to say that we’ve seen a big increase in activity in January 2023 compared to the relatively slow end to 2022 – long may that continue. Some highlights include big raises in Europe and Asia tied to a flurry of activity in North America. Happy reading!
- Digital health start-up with high Volta-ge raise
- Swiss insurtech closes new round (DIA Alumni)
- Lloyd’s bank pumps cash into payment enabler
- £45 million dished out to help build the Superscript
- Oxbotica shoots into stardom with monster raise
- hi.health plans expansion with new cash injection
- There’s more cash in the game to help customers get a Betterview
- Dayforward plans to use capital to offer life insurance to the nomads
- iLife raises new round to tackle insurance distribution
- Pathpoint’s going to help you find a way through the chaos
- Floodbase becomes latest parametric insurtech to come to the fore
- No need to Rethink this series B
- Guardz! Save me from increasing cyber-attacks!
- Propeller’s on the move
- Doorstead bags more than respectable series B round
- Joyn-ing the dots in insurance has never been easier
- Qoala’s hugging all the money this time
- This round was Eazy peasy, lemon squeezey
- Qritive’s got expansion on its mind
- Ironically, this pre-series A raise for Ouch was pain-free
- Blackpanda gets $15 million
- Africa’s Catalyst fund is backing loads of start-ups
1). Volta Medical, an AI-powered cardiac arrhythmia identification business based in France has raised €36 million in a round led by Vensana Capital. Run by CEO and Co-Founder Théophile Mohr Durdez, Volta’s technology enables doctors to find and treat heart issues in patient and will use the funds to improve their product and expand into the US.
2). Switzerland’s Toni Digital (DIA Alumni) has finalised its Series B round with a raise of $12.5 million led by their existing investors. The insurtech offers products across both personal and commercial lines across P&C and life. Bernard El Hage, Chief Executive Officer of Toni Digital, said: “We would like to thank our investors for their continued support and trust in our team and our vision. We are planning to use the proceeds of this funding round to leverage our cutting-edge technology platform and to launch multiple new insurance programmes and products as well as to enter new European markets. We will grow our sales, underwriting, and engineering team. In fact, there are not many insurance lines that remain that we are not offering yet.”
3). Caura will use its latest raise to develop embedded financial services as well as white-labeled payment solutions. The company has received £4 million from Lloyd’s Banking Group in an exciting proposition for the motor insurance market. “Lloyds Banking Group and their proactive approach to innovation is incredibly exciting, and the cross-pollination of ideas between our respective teams will allow us to deliver an innovative suite of products and services that the market has not seen before to customers ranging from drivers through to vehicle manufacturers,” said Dr Sai Lakshmi, CEO and Founder of Caura.
4). BHL UK has reaffirmed its faith in Superscript by leading a sizeable £45 million Series B round. Looking to develop the company’s underwriting and broking abilities as well as expand product lines, CEO and Co-Founder Cameron Shearer said, “In the context of a challenging macroeconomic environment and shift in global investor appetites, this funding round represents a huge vote of confidence in what we’re building at Superscript.”
5). In this month’s biggest featured raise, Oxbotica is reminding everyone about the future of mobility with a $140 million Series C. They’ll use the funds from investors such as Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance and ENEOS Innovation Partners to supercharge their operations in the autonomous vehicles space. CEO Gavin Jackson said “It didn’t take that much time at all to show you can solve what is really needed versus what is not a problem at all. It was a distinction investors understood quickly in the first 30 seconds of us talking to them.”
6). Vienna-based health plaform, hi.health has landed a €6 million pre-Series A round with funding from SpeedInvest and Calm/Storm. Sebastian Gruber, CEO and Co-Founder, is looking to tackle the issue of red tape in the health space by streamlining the reimbursement process in healthcare. Gruber said “The fact that we have already been able to process several hundred thousand submissions for our users after almost three years on the market shows how great the need is for a digital solution for reimbursement for private insurance companies. The fresh capital now gives us the opportunity to further expand our great team and to offer partner companies and users even more digital services from hi.health in the future.”
1). Betterview has raised an undisclosed amount of money from its existing investors including EMC Insurance, Guidewire and Nationwide. CEO and Co-Founder David Lyman, plans to increase growth, expand product lines and pave the way for profitability in 2023. Lyman said, “We are excited to have strong financial backing with favourable terms to continue growing rapidly and reaching profitability in 2023.”
2). Digital Life Insurer, Dayforward, which emphasises cover for modern families has raised $25 million. With backing from AXA Venture Partners, Aaron Shapiro and the Dayforward team will look to scale the business across the US and expand its product lines.
3). Foundation Capital, Brewer Lane Ventures and SCOR Ventures have led a $17 million round for iLife Technologies. Founded by Nelson Lee, the company aims to become the number one front-end operating system to help distributors consolidate workflows. “Over the last two decades, I’ve led and advised some of the largest life insurance companies in the world, and I’ve seldom seen a company as innovative and game-changing for this industry as iLife,” said John Kim, Founder and Managing Partner of Brewer Lane Ventures. “Nelson and his team are arming agents and carriers at all levels with everything they need to excel at their jobs. We are delighted to support iLife on this next phase of their journey.”
4). Pathpoint, the insurtech that helps agents get bindable small commercial Excess & Surplus quotes has been given a cash injection of $12.5 million. The round was led by Caffeinated Capital among other investors. CEO and Co-Founder Alex Bargmann will scale distribution and extend supply for the company.
5). One of the latest players in the parametric and climate space, Floodbase has completed a Series A round worth $12 million. Focused on providing real-time data and analysis on flooding and flood risk relating to hurricanes, the round led by Lowercarbon Capital will help fuel the platform’s growth. Bessie Schwarz, CEO and Co-Founder of Floodbase, said, “The world needs innovative financial and insurance tools if we are to have any hope of adapting to climate change. We are proud to be the leading calculation agent for parametric flood insurance, and now add flood protection to expand the coverage of parametric hurricane policies as well.”
6). US commercial underwriter reThought Insurance has announced a $10.5 million Series B round led by IA Capital Group. Cory Isaacson, Chief Executive and Founder of rethought Insurance, says: “The continued support of our existing investor partners, alongside the welcome addition of new, highly experienced insurance venture capitalists is a powerful endorsement of our market-leading technological approach, especially now, when InsurTech funding is receding. The private market for US commercial flood insurance is set to grow exponentially.”
7). Guardz has joined the cyber game with a $10 million raise and has come out of stealth mode. With a specific focus on SMEs at risk of ransomware attacks their seed round was led by Hanaco Ventures. CEO Dor Eisner used his experience from working with the Dark Web to develop the business and said, “As we started to look at the Dark Web we were first looking for what was being built and sold to attack enterprises.”
8). A consortium of industry players have helped Propeller Bonds bag $6.4 million in seed funding. Co-Founders Aaron Steffey and Chris Kolger will expand the MGA’s staff as well as its product line while funnelling their efforts into marketing and distribution.
9). Avanta Ventures has led the Series B round for Doorstead, an insurtech operating in the rental market. The company manages the risk of paying the difference to landlords if properties don’t take in expected capital. CEO and Co-Founder Ryan Waliany said, “When we started, we thought that, ‘we’re just going to make a tech-enabled property management company. We’re going to build like Uber Eats for property management.’ But when we started talking to customers, we realized that we were wrong. We realized that there was a bigger problem that was unaddressed in the market, and that was that property owners were getting overpromised rents. Their properties could sit vacant for three or six months and in some cases, it cost them their home. So we thought, ‘what if we can give them a guarantee upfront before we find a tenant?’”
10). Liberate, a Saas platform that helps insurers make their claims and underwriting processes more efficient has received $7 million in a seed round led by Eclipse. With a focus on the P&C market which is facing tremendous pressure in relation to both capital and talent, this raise will help them tackle the challenges insurers are facing in this space. “P&C insurers need a new way to modernize quickly and cost-effectively to offer a better customer and employee experience and increase profitability – traditional approaches to modernization — like upgrading core systems — take too long, cost too much, and have questionable ROI,” said Amrish Singh, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Liberate.
11). Joyn Insurance has been dealt a great hand with a $17.7 million Series A round led by OMERS Ventures. Founded in 2021 by CEO Seraina Macia, the insurtech facilitates transparency and accuracy for the insurance industry to improve customer experience. The CEO said “We built this company to remove the pain points and operational inefficiencies that have frustrated brokers and underwriters for as long as we can remember, and we are proud to be delivering on this bold mission. This funding will allow us to further build and expand so we can continue providing a best-in-class insurance experience in the market,” Macia continued, “Many brokers are already seeing that we can deliver on what we were built to do, and with our broad E&S appetite for small to mid-sized property and general liability risks, we look forward to adding more trading partner relationships in the near future.”
1). Indonesia’s Qoala has picked up a monster raise of $65 million led by Eurazeo. Now South East Asia’s fastest growing insurtech, CEO and Co-Founder Harshet Lunani can use the capital to improve its standing in the market where its tackling challenges in the retail insurance space. “We will continue to invest towards scaling up Qoala’s reach in our core markets and focus on enhancing our technology and product experience to greatly reduce the hurdles to accessing insurance that are today still very significant,” saidHarshet.
2). Bangkok-based Eazy Digital has raised $850,000 in seed funding in a round led by Wavemaker Partners. “The insurance industry is still in its infancy in digitisation. Current startups focus on the digital distribution of products via partnerships (embedded insurance), direct-to-consumers, and agency platforms. However, insurance companies have been left unattended and have to often find their solutions to the digitisation of processes and distribution,” Harprem Doowa, founder of Eazy Digital said.
3). Healthcare start-up Qritive has taken in a $7.5 million round led by MassMutual Ventures. Now with a presence in Singapore, US and India, the company uses AI to improve pathology interpretations and has huge capabilities across multiple sectors. Founders Dr. Aneesh Sathe and Dr. Kaveh Taghipour will use the funds to expand into new territories and support regulatory requirements.
4). Malaysia’s Ouch! has announced a pre-Series A round worth 6 figures. Operating in the personal lines space for motor, health, home, travel and life, the platform will now look to launch a new product before the end of 2023’s first quarter. “With the impending introduction of the first pure tech-enabled takaful solutions provider, this successful round of funding will allow us to deliver affordable cover at a bigger and wider scale,” said Shazy Noorazman, CEO of Ouch!. “We are proud to have received the vote of confidence from several big players and it is a sign that our approach is being recognised and well received by the market.”
5). Another player in the cybersecurity game, Blackpanda, has closed a $15 million Series A. Led by Primavera Venture Partners and Gaw Capital Partners, the company said the raise will fund the expansion of their AI-powered cybersecurity platform. “Cybercrime caused a staggering US$1 trillion-plus in losses in 2020 and is rapidly climbing in Asia. Nearly half of all Singapore businesses suffered a cyber-attack in 2021. The first step to cybersecurity is to make sure a response-based plan is in place prior to a sudden hack. A business owner wouldn’t open a physical office without any access to firefighters. Yet chances of a fire are only 1 out of 2000 for businesses, while a cyber-attack is an incredible 1 out of 5,” said Blackpanda Founder and Chief Executive Officer Gene Yu.
1). Accelerator Catalyst Fund has pumped $2 million into African start-ups geared towards tackling climate change. They will join the fund’s portfolio of 61 start-ups across emerging markets that are all working to make Africa more resilient to climate change. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with 10 groundbreaking African startups working to build a more resilient and sustainable future,” said Maelis Carraro, managing partner of Catalyst Fund. “Our goal is to back mission-driven founders that share our vision of a world where every individual has the tools and opportunities they need to thrive. From agri-tech to insurtech, waste management, disaster response, and carbon finance, these startups display finance, tech, and business model innovations that will help communities better adapt to climate impacts and grow their resilience.”