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Global funding rounds 'rain money' as insurance plays catch up

Insurtech Gateway Australia says global investment activity in the first half has seen records broken as funders see attractive insurance opportunities, and has called for more local activity.

“So why is it raining money for insurtech?” Gateway CEO Simon O’Dell says in a July update. “Insurance is one of the most resilient and fundamentally essential industries of our time but it still has a long way to go to catch up to today’s consumer expectations.”

Innovation and flexibility in insurance are sought after commodities in a COVID-19 world, he says.

In Europe over €1.7 billion ($2.7 billion) was invested across 52 deals in the first half of the year, while Willis Towers Watson reported first quarter funding globally rose 180% to $US2.55 billion ($3.5 billion).

New York and Singapore based firm bolttech recently completed an oversubscribed $US180 million ($244 million) series A funding round, which it said was the largest ever for an insurtech and valued the firm at more than $US1 billion ($1.4 billion), giving it “unicorn status” a year after launch.

“We're seeing similar indicators here in Australia, with Honey, raising a record breaking $15m for its seed round in June but we're still working on a subdued scale,” Mr O’Dell said.

Honey, which aims to shake-up the home and contents market, received financial backing from underwriting partner RACQ and other institutional investors.