December 7, 2021

Future50 Europe & Amazon’s insurance rollout


A weekend must-read: Future50 Europe

I’m hoping you’ve already clocked it. If not, it’s a compilation of the next generation, pre-Series B, insurtechs that are driving change across the insurance landscape.

A genuinely superb read and huge thanks to the team at Sønr, Insurtech Insights and the judges for making it happen.

You can download the report here:

And, if you’re a Sønr customer or trialist (14-days free, you won’t regret it), you can find more detail on each startup here:

More in the report but here are a few of the trends we’ve pulled out:

  1. Distribution disrupted
  • Competition for consumer attention has never been more intense
  • Insurers are increasingly having to meet consumers where they are
  1. Only pay for what you need
  • Enable consumers to equate cover with usage
  • Use of telematics and data analytics to enable usage-based insurance policies
  1. Realising untapped opportunities
  • The insurance industry has been notorious for not meeting the needs of underserved consumers
  • Disruptors in the industry, especially in life and health lines are seeing major disruption
  1. Insuring a changing world
  • The implications of climate change are profound for individuals and communities
  • Catastrophe management and climate underwriting are increasingly critical
  1. Wellness as the new normal
  • The fundamental shift of insurers from payer to proactive health and wellness partner

Let’s get into some market news.

A great couple of weeks for European insurtech

Keeping with the European vibe and Germany’s Getsafe has secured an additional $63 million as an extension to its Series B in December.

The plan is to fund its own insurance licence by the end of 2021 and to accelerate its European expansion. Interestingly, it launched its renters insurance product in the UK last year and this already represents 25% of its total growth.

Another is Sweden’s Hedvig which has raised a $45m Series B.

The startup has now reached 70,000 customers (a 370% increase from its last round, in 2019) – the majority of which, it says, are under the age of 30. Hedvig, which provides property, travel, contents and accident insurance, will use the funds to launch operations in a fourth country outside of Scandinavia and also expand its team and product.

Great to see and congratulations to both teams.

Insurtech 2.0 – How You Can Win

I’m a big fan of the content Adrian Jones of HSCM Ventures puts out. I couldn’t make it this year but here’s a link to the deck he presented. Definitely worth a read.

And my favourite slide:

Insurtech spicing up Life

Life insurance startup Ladder has raised $100m at a $900m valuation to build its platform for selling flexible term life insurance.

Ladder has had a strong year of growth with revenues growing four-fold. The platform is now on track to issue $30bn in coverage by the end of this year. This is big news in a sector not known for change.

On a somewhat smaller note, I clocked that last week Sureify has announced a $15m Series C.

These guys provide a white-label SaaS solution – used by the likes of Allstate, Amica, and StateFarm, which helps carriers acquire, service and engage their customers with one enterprise platform.

The new capital investment will allow Sureify to further build out its platform and also amp up research and development efforts.

Finally, a business I like a lot is AI and predictive modelling platform Atidot which has partnered up with healthcare data provider Health Gorilla.

The partnership is set to enhance the experience of Atidot’s life insurance customers during key stages of their journey. Plus, it will also allow insurers to more effectively manage the risk of new and existing business. Nice.

From needles to community health insurance

On the health front, three, maybe four, that grabbed me.

Health wearable specialist GraphWear has landed $20.5m for its needle-free, far from pointless (sorry) continuous glucose monitoring platform.

GraphWear can diagnose and monitor chronic diseases continuously without any blood or urine through its wearable sensor, which measures glucose molecules on the surface of the skin. How good is that?

Their next step is to grow the team and expand its clinical trials into management for other diseases, such as cholesterol and cancer detection.

Keeping with the US and Texas startup Crowdhealth has secured $6m.

As the name suggests, Crowdhealth offers a crowdfunding model to pay its users’ medical bills. After signing up users pay a nominal flat monthly fee; after that, they pay $500 per health event and any additional expenses are submitted to the Community for funding.

The last from the US is mental health startup Meru Health which has secured $38m for its holistic online mental health platform.

This was off the back of growing its customer base 10x and seeing a whopping 700% revenue growth in 2020. As you can imagine, their mission is to improve the lives of people living with depression, anxiety and burnout.

Moving further East and US software firm Cloud Klair has acquired UAE-based health insurtech Sehteq.

Sehteq was launched in 2018 and makes use of AI to digitise the supply of insurance plans to more than 700k individuals and families in the UAE by accelerating and automating the sale and post-sale processes.

Interesting times afoot as always in health.

On that note, this week’s Spøtlight: an interview with Shannon Goggin from Noyo.

Shannon is the Co-Founder and CEO of Noyo which, in her owns words is ‘the leading API platform powering fast, accurate data exchange across the benefits ecosystem’.

Having raised a $12.5m Series A last year and recently partnering with Guardian Life, it makes for a good read and great insight into their business.

A new kid on the UK telematics block

Bringing things closer to home and UK’s claims management company WNS Assistance has partnered with By Miles.

As part of the partnership, WNS Assistance will be offering 24/7 claims management solution for By Miles’ pay-by-mile policies.

And once known as YouToggle, Kudo has launched in the UK.

The strategy is to ask prospective customers to take a 2-week test drive – the ‘Kudo Challenge’. If they meet the grade then they’ll get ‘a great quote’ and find out ‘insurance doesn’t have to be as bad as you think it is’.

They’ve also built in a whole load of gamification – Koins and seemingly gone old skool with their graphics.

All change in the US mobility market

I think I talked about GM’s move out of pure auto in the last SøNws.

This week they announced it will double its annual revenue to $280bn by 2030, with a strategy that includes software and data focused businesses. Let’s assume insurance is in there somewhere shall we?

A couple of other good ‘uns.

Full-stack rideshare and delivery driver specialist Buckle has raised a $60m Series B. The funding is to increase scale and offer financial security.

US auto insurance startup LOOP has raised a $21 million Series A and comes only 9 months after their $3.25m Seed. A positive indicator for continued success and I imagine much of this is off the back of the partnership they struck with TomTom last year.

The plan was for TomTom to provide Loop with its mapping technology – speed profiles, traffic stats, and maps etc. In turn for Loop to use AI to analyse the roads and advise drivers to reroute. I’m assuming they’ve managed to get something working!

On the commercial side, SMB trucking fleet MGA Cover Whale has completed a $15.5m round. We’ll see a load of growth in this space I’ve no doubt.

Taking a slight twist an Voom has brought in a $15m round.

Following the launch of the world’s first per-mile insurance product for motorcycles in August, the new cash will enable them to expand its line-up to other underserved mobility markets including light aircraft, ‘leisure vehicles’ and the uber-competitive gig economy.

Fascinating to see how traditionally niche markets are being opened up by tech-enabled startups and will be interesting to keep tabs on their commercial performance.

And finally Swiss Re will partner with Claim Genius, which provides AI-powered claims solutions.

Swiss Re stated the team-up would help the company to deliver enhanced ‘claims management capabilities to its cedent clients, helping them lower settlement time and costs, while making the post-accident process fast, fair and frictionless for consumers’.

Cyber maturing and attracting the big bucks

Cyber insurance firm Coalition has secured a $205 million Series E round, and is now valued at a pretty massive $3.5 billion.

The California firm offers businesses cybersecurity tools and insurance to help manage and mitigate cyber risk to more than 50,000 customers, having doubled its customer base during the past year.

From a performance perspective, Coalition has also reported GWP of more than £325 million, an 800% increase YoY. The firm will use the money from the new funding round to expand into new insurance lines.

And further to last week’s news on BOXX’s $10m Series A they’ve announced a partnership with Zurich (who happened to be one of the investors) and appointed Hilario Itriago (previously of Rokk3r and RSA LatAm) as President of the US. Well, the US business at least.

October’s hot topic: Embedded insurance

Some super interesting stuff going on across embedded at the mo. And by the sounds of it one of the hot topics at ITC.

Insurance infrastructure app Sure has raised a $100m Series C at a valuation of $550 million, to help companies quickly launch insurance products with its flexible APIs.

The company – whose customers include Farmers, Chubb, Revolut, and auto manufacturers – claims its ARR has increased by ‘more than 3x every year over the past several years’. It plans to use the new funds for international expansion in Europe, LatAm and Asia.

And in Australia, Cover Genius has scored a AUD $100m Series C round.

In the last six months, Cover Genius has tripled its GWP and signed 20 new partners across various industries. The new funding will be used to expand its platform for new e-commerce, property, travel, mobility, auto, B2B and financial services partners.

And what SøNws would be complete without talking about Amazon’s incremental stepping into insurance?!

6 months ago: offering business insurance to Amazon Sellers.
Today: business insurance to Business Prime Members.
Tomorrow: ?

Love it. But we shouldn’t think it stops at business insurance.

A good example of what’s happening elsewhere is Indonesian e-commerce giant Tokopedia which will offer general insurance through its partnership with Insurtech platform Fuse. One to keep an eye on for sure.

The underserved and embedded opportunity in India

One of my favourite parts of SøNws is seeing what’s going on outside of the US and European markets.

Let’s start with one of my favourite countries and a company I have a lot of time for:

Bengaluru-based startup, GramCover raised a $7m Series A.

Founded in 2016, the digital insurance marketplace is focused on supporting (under-insured) rural Indian consumers with a range of products including motor, health, crop and livestock insurance.

Having worked with more than 1.7 million customers in the past 12 months, they’re looking to further expand their product and service offering.

Also in India, another great but super early-stage business is SafeTree which has raised a $1m Seed.

It has been launched with the vision to de-risk India through embedded and innovative insurance solutions, distributed through digital channels. If there’s any market for this to take off it’s India.

Asia’s growing digital-first insurance market

Out in Thailand and one of their largest insurance firms, Muang Thai Life Assurance has entered a partnership with ZA Tech Global.

It will see MTL use ZA Tech’s SaaS offering – enabling them to co-design, develop and deliver new and innovative products to market more quickly and efficiently. Given ZA Tech’s track record it’ll be interesting to see what comes next – particularly in a market cited by both partners as being ripe for new digital-first products.

Malaysian Insurtech PolicyStreet has landed a c.$6m Series A.

The startup aims to expand into new markets with the fresh capital while also doubling down on its technological capabilities and marketing efforts to provide a wide variety of insurance products. The plans are part of the startup’s effort to meet the growing demands of insurance protection in the digital space.

On that note, you might have already clocked this one – Hong Kong’s FWD Group Holdings has filed for a stock market listing in the US, revealing a jump in revenue to $9.49 billion last year. Not bad hey?

There are no terms for its IPO yet, but it is reported that the firm could raise $2-3 billion, valuing the company up to $15 billion.

Africa’s untapped billions

Across the way in Egypt and Amenli has raised $2.3m to provide consumers with insurance amid an extremely low rate of insurance penetration. Or to put it another way a $2 billion untapped insurance market.

The company has seen crazy growth with revenue tripling since its accelerator graduation. The platform issues more than 500 policies in less than 10 minutes compared to a min 3-week industry standard.

Interesting, keeping with Egypt and Berlin’s digital health company Ada Health is set to partner with AXA OneHealth, an Egypt-based subsidiary of AXA.

Ada was selected as a partner to underpin AXA OneHealth’s digital ecosystem in the region and enhance the digital experience for users. The partnership will integrate Ada’s AI-based enterprise solutions and also provide AXA OneHealth’s users with on-demand access to health guidance.

Last but not least Kenyan insurtech, Lami Technologies has partnered with a tech-logistics company Sendy Limited to enable transporters in Kenya to access hassle-free and more affordable insurance products which are customised on a per-trip basis.

Transport sector is key for Kenya’s economy and most transporters move goods and commodities without business-specific insurance risking a potential loss.

Love this stuff and it makes me want to get travelling again. Soon.

That is me.

I have one more job to do today and that’s to run through the Insurtech 100 that has now been scored by the judges, ranked by my team and will be moving into production as of next week.

It’s been a crazy year for Insurtech and I genuinely cannot wait to see who is in it and how different it’ll be from other years.

Sadly though, you will have to wait. Just another few weeks or so.

For now, don’t forget to download the Future50 Europe.

Do get in touch if you’d like to connect or learn how Sønr can help your business.

Have a good weekend.