An Insurtech round-up: $169M in funding and an acquisition

You might say it’s “Let’s Make a Deal” time in insurtech. Three insurtech startups recently revealed funding rounds totaling $169 million, and another insurtech startup made an acquisition three months after scoring $16 million in venture capital.

The biggest of the three funding rounds went to Pie Insurance, a Washington, D.C.-based startup that sells workers’ compensation insurance to small businesses. Pie Insurance picked up $118 million in a Series C round led by Allianz X and Acrew Capital, with participation from Greycroft, SVB Capital, SiriusPoint, Elefund and Moxley Holdings.

“Commercial insurance is long overdue for the online transformation that personal lines have benefited from for years,” John Swigart, co-founder and CEO of Pie Insurance, said in a news release. “Now more than ever, small businesses deserve to be supported, not hindered, by their insurance company.”

Pie Insurance has raised more than $300 million since being founded in 2017.

San Francisco-based Ease, an online HR and benefits platform for small businesses, insurance brokers and insurance providers, also raised a $41 million Series C. Spectrum Equity led the round, with participation from Centana Growth Partners, Propel Venture Partners, Freestyle Capital, Compound Ventures and Upside Partnership.

“This pandemic reinforced an already accelerating trend: Companies are becoming increasingly more reliant on digital solutions to conduct business and meet their employees’ needs, and brokers who have not already adopted more modern technology capabilities are running the risk of becoming obsolete,” David Reid, co-founder and CEO of Ease, said in a news release.

Ease has collected more than $70 million in venture capital since being founded in 2012.

Los Angeles-based Counterpart, which operates a platform for management liability insurance, received $10 million in a Series A round led by Valor Equity Partners. Susa Ventures and Felicis Ventures also participated in the round.

In conjunction with the funding round, Counterpart said it’s teaming up with Markel Specialty, the specialty insurance division of Markel Corp., to offer management liability insurance. Counterpart was founded in 2019.

“The insurance industry has an opportunity and obligation to use all available information to help small businesses navigate today’s newfound risks,” Counterpart CEO Tanner Hackett said in a news release. “We spent the last 12 months deepening our understanding of this product in collaboration with the largest wholesale brokers in the country.”

Three months after attracting $16 million in funding and emerging from stealth mode, Salt Lake City-based Salty Dot purchased Purple Insurance for an undisclosed amount. Purple’s lead generation and marketing platform enables car dealerships to sell auto insurance as part of the car-buying process. Salty’s SaaS platform lets insurers and their partners offer insurance policies in real time during the purchase process. 

Purple’s founder, Jim Maxfield, has joined Salty Dot as its chief sales officer and initially will focus on Salty Dot’s Wheels vertical. He brings 42 car dealerships to the Salty Dot fold.

“There is enormous potential for embedded insurance in the automotive market and beyond. The acquisition of Purple Insurance not only accelerates our technology capabilities as a product-first company but also further enhances the user experience,” James Hall, founder and CEO of Salty Dot, said in a news release.
Investors in Salty Dot’s $16 million round, announced in December, include Elefund, Fremont Group and Human Capital. The insurtech startup was founded in 2019.

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