Insurtech weekly news roundup: July 01

Insurtech weekly news roundup: July 01 | Insurance Business America

Insurtech weekly news roundup: July 01

This week, Vertafore made an acquisition. Bestow is pursuing layoffs. Confianza, Inc. raised a seed funding round. Amwins partnered with FusionMGA to boost cyber liability cover. Pie Insurance has expanded into two additional states. Stere has set up shop in Latin America.

Vertafore

Vertafore, an insurance technology company, has acquired MGA Systems, a software provider focused on managing general agents (MGAs).

Neither side disclosed the purchase price.

With the acquisition, Vertafore customers get access to policy administration and rating products that will be integrated into Vertafore’s technology roster and strengthen its existing MGA software offering.

MGA Systems produces two major products for MGAs. One, IMS, is a management system with a full range of policy administration and back-office functionality that’s customizable to specific client needs. There’s also NetRate, a full featured ISO-based rating system. Both products have helped MGA Systems customers enjoy an accelerated product time to market, with support and expertise backing the process.

Vertafore said its acquisition of MGA Systems will allow for accelerated investment and innovation in both companies’ products.

Bestow

Life insurance start-up Bestow slashed 41 jobs in mid-June. The Dallas, TX-based company said the cuts affect about 14% of its staff.

The cuts stem from “changing market conditions,” Bestow co-founder and CEO Melbourne O’Banion said in a statement.

Company executives shared news of the layoffs individually with each affected employee, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Laid-off employees each get a severance package, COBRA health insurance and access to free mental health services. In addition, Bestow is letting laid-off workers keep laptops and other work equipment. They also get employment outplacement services to help find new jobs.

Bestow has raised more than $137.5 million in private equity funding through four funding rounds since 2017, according to CrunchBase. News of the layoffs comes just months after the company announced plans to hire up to 150 additional employees in 2022 and build on strong revenue growth, according to The Dallas Morning News.

Confianza

Early-stage insurtech start-up Confianza, Inc. raised a seed funding round to help advance its data analytics and machine learning technology for insurance agents, brokers and carriers.

Sandbox Insurtech Ventures led the financing.

“We … look forward to working closely with our partners to harness their strategic insights, resources and extensive insurance industry expertise,” Confianza co-founder and CEO Jeffrey Glazer said in prepared remarks.

Launched in 2020, Confianza has built a third-party dataset from proprietary, licensed and public sources incorporating over 270 million individuals, 170 million households and 60 million large and small businesses, spanning more than 2,700 attributes. The company’s curated data can be intuitively related to an insured’s level of exposure and risk, financial health and wellbeing. It also can connect to household/business composition, interests and hobbies. As a result, Confianza can provide a variety of data and analytics services that can be used at any point in the insurance value chain.

Amwins/FusionMGA

Amwins, a global MGA that distributes specialty insurance products and services, is partnering with FusionMGA on boosting cyber liability cover.

FusionMGA helps retail brokers provide cyber risk mitigation beyond risk transfer of a cyber policy without having to become a cybersecurity expert themselves.

Their alliance will provide retail brokers with exclusive access to cyber liability coverage for accounts without minimum cybersecurity controls in place. There’s also complimentary access to proprietary cybersecurity tools and resources.

“These tools and coverage will help retail brokers differentiate themselves from their competition and is ideal for small to middle market clients,” David Lewison, executive vice president and national professional lines practice leader at Amwins, said in prepared remarks.

Pie Insurance

Pie Insurance, an insurtech specializing in workers’ compensation insurance for small businesses, has expanded into Alabama and Oregon.

That means the company’s coverage footprint now includes 38 states and Washington, D.C., covering 89% of small businesses in the US.

Pie Insurance is an MGA that uses technology to simplify how businesses buy and experience commercial insurance. The company focuses on granular, sophisticated pricing and data-driven customer segmentation.

Pie has raised more than $300 million since launching in 2017 and partners with over 2,800 agencies nationally.

Stere

The insurtech Stere is expanding its operations to the Latin America Insurance market.

Stere is a two-sided digital marketplace that specializes in capacity sourcing and unique digital capabilities for embedded insurance partners and MGAs. Its clients include program administrators and embedded insurance programs, along with partners such as carriers, fronting carriers, reinsurers, brokers and program consultants.

Stere’s new office will be based in Brazil and headed by Thiago Soares as the company’s CEO of Latin American operations.

Plans call for using the new office to serve regional embedded and affinity clients such as tech platforms, banks, online marketplaces, superapps and member-based organizations.