Sure, an insurance infrastructure startup, announced today that it has closed on $100 million in Series C funding at a $550 million valuation.
New York-based Declaration Partners and European growth investor Kinnevik co-led the financing, which also included participation from WndrCo and existing backers W. R. Berkley and Menlo Ventures. The round brings the Santa Monica-based startup’s total raised to $123.1 million since its 2015 inception.
Sure launched its first (enterprise SaaS) product in early 2016, and today counts traditional financial services and fintech companies alike among its customers. Customers include Farmers Insurance, Chubb, Intuit, Betterment, Revolut, Carvana, several automotive manufacturers and a leading global credit card network. All offer insurance programs built on Sure’s infrastructure.
While Sure would not disclose hard revenue figures, it does claim to have been profitable since 2019. Also, CEO and co-founder Wayne Slavin says its annual recurring revenue (ARR) has grown “by more than 3X every year over the past several years.”
In a nutshell, Sure says it has created technology infrastructure that modernizes the entire insurance process and “allows it to be embedded into consumer experiences.” In other words, using Sure’s infrastructure, companies can sell insurance directly to consumers “in a matter of milliseconds,” the company claims, through an entirely digital experience that does not involve paper or humans.
The company is at the “forefront” of embedded insurance, according to Slavin.
That embedded insurance, he said, is “insurance that is integrated into the brand’s existing digital products across all industries,” he said.
“This can range from car insurance included in the online purchase of a new electric car or buying a used car on Carvana to purchasing business insurance when you start your company’s new bank account,” Slavin added.
The benefits of using its APIs allow companies to go to market with new insurance product offerings faster, simpler and cheaper compared to other methods, Slavin says.
“Sure differentiates in the three pillars that matter to our customers: tried and tested technology infrastructure, fastest speed to market and the ability to offer fully embedded customer experiences,” Slavin told TechCrunch. “Like any legacy industry being disrupted there are many players trying to ride the wave of ‘embedded’ by rebranding their 1.0 experiences with a fancy new name. True embedded insurance experiences are unique and pioneered by Sure because they’re built from the ground up to fulfill an end-to-end transaction in the embedded channel.”
The company plans to use its new capital from its growth round to accelerate its global expansion, speed up new product launches and continue to “streamline embedded insurance customer experiences.”
International expansion will come in the form of new customers — and offices — in Europe, Latin America and Asia, as well as existing customers with successful domestic programs that plan to expand their insurance solutions to international customers, according to Slavin.
Sure also plans to continue hiring. Sure’s current employee count is 80, which is up over 50% since last year. The company plans to triple its engineering headcount in 2022.
Brian Stern, a partner at Declaration Partners, said his firm was drawn to Sure because of its view that Slavin is “a visionary leader” as well as “the massive global market for this transformational technology.”
“Sure is focused on the consumer experience, convenience and the power of embedding this capability into a consumer’s relationship with a brand,” he said.
Kinnevik’s Ola Nordbye said a couple of his firm’s portfolio companies already use Sure.
“We like how it enables better customer experiences at the same time as it unlocks a massive untapped profit pool for the brands that have already acquired their customer base,” he wrote via email. “One of the most difficult fintech spaces to get right when it comes to this is within insurance. We were impressed by Sure’s state-of-the-art tech platform, which is advanced far beyond what you would expect from a company at this stage, a founder with a crystal clear vision of what he wants to create combined with deep sector knowledge, and stellar financial KPIs such as growth and profitability.”
Nordbye added that Sure is unique in how it enables new revenue streams on both ends of the equation (insurance companies as well as brands), and that they do that as a software play and without being a risk carrier.
“The fact that they can provide holistic offerings that can be delivered at incredible implementation speed is really unique as well,” he added.