KPMG published last week its latest Pulse of Fintech report, including the investment figures for the year-to-date in the insurtech space.
The headline figure was that the top 20 deals between January and June numbered just shy of $1bn ($980m), with Oscar Health leading the way with $400m, followed by Clover Health ($180m) and Bright Health ($80m).
Interestingly, there were only two European firms on the list - Germany's Friendsurance (at 14 with $15m) and French anti-fraud business Shift Technology (at 20 with $10m) - but none from the UK, compared to 63% in the US.
Which got me thinking. At the start of the year, I spotlighted a number of insurtech start-ups to watch in 2016. But given the growth in numbers, I should do an update featuring another eight UK-based businesses to watch that might one day crack the KPMG top 20.
To put the above figures in perspective, Buzzmove last week claimed the "largest early stage super seed raise [for an insurtech start-up] in the UK so far" after pulling in £6m lead by Bermuda-based insurer White Mountain.
So could any of these equal or indeed top that figure in the next 12-24 months?
The latest in a growing line of peer-to-peer insurance platforms, this one claims it will save drivers up to 75% of their premiums.
It is the brainchild of insurtech veterans [if there is such a thing] Ando Kivilaid and Risto Rossar, the co-founders of broker software platform provider Insly, which earlier this year raised almost €1m (£750 000) from angel investors. This in itself is a spin-off from the IIZI Group which claims to be the "most successful insurance broker group in Central Eastern European region".
In a statement on its site, the firm boasts: "At Inspool, we are passionate about using technology to give consumers a better deal and believe that good honest drivers deserve reward not penalty. We aim to disrupt the traditional insurance world. In the future you won't insure your car, you'll inspool it."
However, "inspooling" may take a while to take off, because as I write this blog it currently says it needs 2000 people to start Inspool, but currently only has 610.
On this start-up's website, the firm proclaims: "We are passionately building an insurtech platform which will address the heart of Generation Rent issue. We are committed to working hand-in-hand with our customers for a better future."
Set up by Tahir Farooqui, who has a background at a number of major consultancies including EY, Accenture and most recently KPMG, the business says it has partnered with Munich Re as its "exclusive launch partner" to provide on-demand lifestyle-based insurance products.
It also has an advisory board that includes a former colleague of Farooqui, KPMG's Sam Evan, as well as Charles Burgess, who also offers his services to Bought By Many. So it has start-up pedigree.
Teambrella claims to be the first peer-to-peer insurance service powered by Bitcoin, and it already has a fan in Worry and Peace founder and Digital Insurance Collective activist James York, who last week exclaimed on Twitter: "Seen their beta and man, there's some smart thinking in there".
Unlike a lot of the businesses on this list, the three founders Alex Paperno, Eugene Porubaev and Vladislav Kravchuk do not appear to have much - if any - insurance experience, but plenty of years working in the tech space.
The closest link to insurance is that Paperno numbers online gambling (Notes NL) and ride sharing (Enrider) on his Linked In CV. What they do share in common is that they all went to university in Saint Petersburg.
However, the trio are quick to stress this should not matter because Teambrella is not a "business of insurance", and does not underwrite policies, keep client funds or pay claims directly to clients.
As to which areas it plans to work in, according to the FAQs on its site, Teambrella says it will handle "almost any kind of insurance", except where liability is not limited, for example some types of health insurance, or if regular insurance is required by law such as employers' liability or motor in the UK.
Tego Cover provides on-demand insurance for delivery drivers underwritten by Axa Insurance.
This is a business area its founders are very au fait with, given its CEO Harry Franks was previously global head of procurement at Deliveroo, while its chief operating officer Sten Starr also worked for the online food delivery company. Before that the pair both worked for One Fine Stay, a high-end version of Airbnb.
Tego is a trading name of Extracover, an appointed representative of Resolution Compliance and received its Financial Conduct Authority approval last month.
The on-demand insurance market - like P2P - is a growing sub-section of the insurtech space, with US-based Slice launching soon after raising $3.9m in seed funding from Horizon Ventures and XL Innovate.
According to its website, Tego Cover "works when your standard insurance policy is no longer valid, when you are working, so you only pay when you work", adding it "offers flexible [cover] for workers in the flexible economy".
So these are four firms to keep an eye on, half of which show the cosmopolitan and multinational nature of the UK insurtech space. I have highlighted another four in the second part of this blog on Post's sister title Insurance Age, which are focusing on disrupting the intermediary sector.
Hear from start-up innovators Tim Attia, CEO of Slice, and Back Me Up's proposition consultant Amy French and head of underwriting Nicki Lenton at the next meeting of Post's Digital Insurance Collective. Don't hesitate to sign up to become a member and #wakeupinsurance!
Happy International #womeninscience day!— innovationXchange (@dfat_iXc) February 10, 2019
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