New kid on the block Pikl, which was brought to life in 2016 by a small team of experienced insurance professionals, has gained the backing of industry bigwig Sir Peter Wood.
The esure and Direct Line founder led Pikl’s £2.5 million seed/pre-Series A funding round. Pikl is the trading name of Norwich-based sharing economy insurance specialist Inlet Insurance Services Limited, which is led by chief executive Louise Birritteri (pictured).
“Pikl has an innovative proposition that will appeal to a fast-growing and underserved market, with significant potential for global expansion,” noted Wood, who is investing in the business alongside esure. “Louise and her team have the experience and drive to fill this gap, and I am delighted to support them on this journey.”
Birritteri previously served as head of pricing at Co-op and Gallagher. Her team’s offerings are distributed both directly to customers and via the wholesale channel.
“By creating wholesale insurance products for brokers working alongside the insurance industry, Pikl is solving this problem for consumers,” said the CEO, referring to Pikl’s earlier research which found that the insurance needs of more than one million short-term rental hosts are not being adequately addressed by major insurers in the UK.
“It means that the generation of Airbnb-ers can now get the best of both worlds – the best deals for both their standard and shared economy cover and, where they struggle to find cover, in Pikl they’ll have a brand that will accommodate them for both types of cover and will always have their best interests at heart.”
As for Wood’s involvement, Birritteri commented: “We are thrilled to have Sir Peter Wood and esure, backed by Bain Capital, together with an impressive group of angel investors backing us in this venture. Their support and experience will lend considerable strength to my team as we scale up.”
Prior to the completion of Pikl’s fundraising, it appointed John Bailey and Alison Astell as head of pricing and head of partnerships, respectively.