Breakdown of SMB insurance startups and carrier moves. China gets new insurance tech startup.
Chinese medicine, SMB insurance, and a new B-Corp
Since the start of last year, there’s been a flurry of activity in the small- and medium-sized business insurance space by both large insurers and small upstarts.
Last December, Berkshire Hathaway created Berkshire Hathaway Direct to sell business insurance online at Cover Your Business.
In April, AIG, Hamilton Insurance Group, and Two Sigma announced a new joint venture to create a platform for insurance sales to the SMB market.
And since October, four US companies have raised over $60M in venture capital and growth equity for tech-enabled distribution of small and medium business insurance.
The latest is Embroker, which today announced a $12.2M Series A from Canaan Partners, XL Innovate, and Nyca Partners. The startup provides an online business insurance management platform and brokerage, but also reportedly hasn’t ruled out extending its software program to existing brokers.
Catch up on the growing tech startup landscape in small business insurance distribution here.
Lemonade goes B-Corp
Joining other New York-based tech companies including Kickstarter and Etsy, Lemonade CEO Daniel Schreiber announced that the online P2P insurance startup was awarded provisional B-Corp certification.
Per the same announcement, Lemonade is still awaiting its license and is set to launch “in New York within weeks” . Schreiber will be joining our Future of Fintech conference on June 8.
Contrasting investments by tech and insurance corporates in China
Startups in China are expanding the purview of insurance tech, and Chinese internet giants are backing them. In a recent newsletter, we highlighted the financing by JD.com of Okchexian, which offers small hedges delivered by mobile app for traffic jams, car washes, and parking tickets.
Now, Tencent, Meituan-Dianping and others have backed Shuidihuzhu, a platform for crowdfunding medical fees that pays out when its users become critically ill.
In an interesting contrast, Chinese insurance giant Ping An participated in a $70M deal to Chinese traditional medicine chain Gushengtang in a deal led by global insurer Starr Companies.