NEW YORK, Feb 27 (Reuters) - Financial services venture capital firm Anthemis has raised $90 million for a new fund that will invest in fast-growing insurance technology startups, the company said on Thursday.
Investors in the Anthemis Insurance Venture Growth Fund I include Aflac Global Ventures, Sumitomo Life and Nürnberger in partnership with Daido Life Insurance Company.
The fund will focus on backing companies that are helping digitize the insurance industry and already have an established track record.
Founded in 2010, Anthemis is well-known as a fintech investment firm focused on early-stage companies, having backed startups including robo-advisor Betterment and digital banks Atom and Simple.
It is opting to focus on later-stage insurtech companies with the new fund because it spotted a gap in the market for this type of funding, Anthemis founder and chief investment officer Sean Park said in an interview.
“This is where we identified the biggest opportunity,” Park said.
London-based Anthemis also said it had hired former Lyft executive Kate Sampson as managing director. At Lyft, Sampson helped grow the ride-hailing company’s in-house insurance operation into a $1 billion insurance unit, which included claims, actuaries, operations and a tech team.
Prior to working at Lyft, Sampson held various senior roles at Marsh & McLennan, where she helped develop insurance for transportation network companies. Based in San Francisco, she is also an advisor to several insurtech startups.
The new Anthemis fund comes as a growing number of young digital-savvy companies develop products and services to help make the insurance industry more efficient. These range from systems to speed up claims processing, to devices that help collect data that can be used to better price policies.
Seeking to benefit from the wave of innovation, many large insurers have launched funds focused on backing companies in the nascent sector.
Anthemis, which also has offices in New York and Geneva, has had numerous insurtech companies in its portfolio of over 100 firms, including startup the Climate Corporation in 2007, which sold to Monsanto in 2013. Other investments include startups Trov, Matic and Flock. (Reporting by Anna Irrera)