Amazon caused quite a stir last October when the e-commerce goliath was reported to be snapping up London-based insurance professionals for what was described as a market disruptor in Europe. While we haven’t heard much on that front since, now the online retailer is making waves in Asia – leading a multi-million funding round for an Indian digital insurer.
Mumbai-based Acko General Insurance, whose model is said to be based on the likes of British insurer Direct Line, has received a major boost after its parent company Acko Technologies secured a $12 million investment led by Amazon, as well as private equity firm ChrysCap founder Ashish Dhawan.
Around the same time last year, a seed round worth $30 million was announced as Acko endeavoured to shake things up in India’s insurance industry.
“Acko is a young and nimble start-up bringing technology and data-led innovation to the insurance sector to deliver a better insurance experience for customers,” The Economic Times quoted Amazon India senior vice president and country manager Amit Agarwal as saying. “We are excited to back companies that are focused on using technology for enhanced customer experience and are led by missionary founders and management teams.”
Amazon’s investment is said to be its first in an insurance company in India. Acko, which is also backed by the likes of Catamaran Ventures, was granted an insurance license last September.
“We are thrilled to have Amazon and Ashish Dhawan as our investors,” said Acko chief executive Varun Dua, as quoted by an Inc42 report. “This investment is a validation of Acko’s strategy to innovate ever more for tomorrow’s financial needs of users.”
Meanwhile if you look at Acko’s website, you’ll see Amazon-related offers – an Amazon gift card for Acko mobile protection customers, as well as low car insurance rates exclusively for Amazon users who purchase cover using Amazon Pay.