Insurtech weekly news roundup: March 11
Rosenbaum said in prepared remarks that company profitability with subscription revenue grew 64% year-over-year. What’s more, he said, Guidewire Cloud gained ground with 11 cloud deals in the quarter from both existing customer migrations and new customers seeking to modernize operations.
During the same period a year ago, Guidewire lost $8.7 million, with results of negative $0.10 per share.
The company saw spending gains through Q2 in R&D as well as sales and marketing. License revenue declined, but subscription and support revenue grew substantially.
Guidewire reported $1.1 billion in cash and equivalents on hand as of Jan. 31, 2022, versus $1.3 billion at July 31, 2021.
Tacora, an investment management firm backed by venture capitalist and PayPal founder Peter Thiel, raised $250 million in the first close of its inaugural fund. The target size: $300 million.
Potential target areas of investment include insurtech, fintech, proptech, logistics and transportation.
Austin, Texas-based Tacora positions itself as something a bit different than your typical start-up investment entity.
“Our portfolio companies view our capital as an important alternative to capital investment, which can be highly dilutive, and doesn’t meet the needs of the capital-intensive businesses we aim to partner with,” Tacora founder and CEO Keri Findley said in prepared remarks. “We seek to isolate asset performance risk from traditional venture equity risk, and plan to invest in specific, strong assets owned by well-positioned companies.”
The company said its investment plan is to generate return through income from credit and credit-like instruments, and long-term equity upside through warrants.
At-Bay, a start-up and cyber managing general agent, appointed Thom Dekens as its new chief strategy officer.
Previously, Dekens served as vice president of Strategy and Corporate Development at cybersecurity company Forescout. Before that he was a strategy advisor with Boston Consulting Group, and began his career as a cybersecurity practitioner at PwC.
Dekens joins At-Bay following its $205 million Series D funding in late 2021.
Dekens is taking on a newly created position. He will drive the company’s long-term strategy, focused on scaling operations to support new growth and forge new business alliances.
The company recently formed partnerships with Microsoft and Cloudflare, which At-Bay said opened the door to new business opportunities. Dekens will also help nurture those.
Slice Labs will team with Appalachian Underwriters Inc. to offer workers’ compensation insurance via AERO Insurance.
The initial offering is available in Georgia and Illinois, though it will expand nationally in the coming weeks via Appalachian’s customer base of more than 100,000 independent agents.
Agents using Slice’s technology can often quote and bind in less than 10 minutes, the company said.
Slice Labs, founded in 2015, sells on-demand insurance and helps carriers offer the same via its Insurance Cloud Services Platform. The AERO Insurance workers’ comp product supports industries including automobile service, construction, hospitality, manufacturing, retail and wholesale. Appalachian Underwriters is an insurance wholesale brokerage outlet, specializing in workers’ compensation, commercial specialty and personal lines products.
Next Insurance, an insurtech focused on small businesses, hired Jennifer Lawrence as its first-ever general counsel.
Previously, Lawrence spent four years as chief legal officer and general counsel at Noblr, a personal auto insurtech now owned by USAA. While there, she oversaw the company’s legal, regulatory and government affairs teams.
Before that, Lawrence was also general counsel for the PURE Group of Insurance Companies and OneBeacon Insurance Group. She was also once an assistant cabinet secretary to the governor of Massachusetts, where she oversaw agencies including the Division of Insurance, the Division of Banks and the Office of International Trade and Investment.
Next CEO and co-founder Guy Goldstein said in prepared remarks that Lawrence’s “deep expertise in insurance and government policy” will help Next scale its business.
Nationwide linked up with the insurtech NeuralMetrics with the goal of helping agents serving the small commercial segment save time in the quoting process.
NeuralMetrics is an insurtech provider that uses natural language processing via its Smart Ratio platform to enable a real-time quoting experience. The platform relies on machine learning to pull out actionable information from hard-to-access unstructured public data.
Nationwide is using NeuralMetrics tech to enhance its small commercial quoting tools. Now, agents can enter client information one time and use pre-fill data to evaluate underwriting exposures and generate a precise quote more quickly.