Given the recent slew of alarming articles about insurtech companies, you’d be forgiven for thinking the startup category was in trouble. Not even a smidgeon of it.
Despite several significant public-market misfires from the sector in 2021, insurtech financing was healthy, as The Exchange recently reported. A number of insurtech businesses based in the United States went public in 2020 and 2021 after successful fundraising rounds. The cohort has been destroyed by valuation drops after some early robust activity.
Following the debacle, we expected insurance-focused startups to fade away, whereas young tech firms focusing on the back end of the global insurance business would flourish. Even so, a handful of insurance-focused digital businesses were among the newest Y Combinator class, and several of them want to write policies themselves.
Of course, this isn’t the case for all of them. Our suspicions about where insurtech entrepreneurs are working on the mechanics of the existing insurance sector are proving to be correct. We were simply overly gloomy about the rest of the insurtech market.
I can’t and won’t quit.
It should come as no surprise that the insurtech startup sector is still alive and well. Following the remarkably robust figures of 2021, there’s reason to believe that 2022 will deliver more of the same. Here’s the lay of the land for insurtech startups in terms of funding, based on a Crunchbase query originally generated by its news team and amended to include data from Q1 2021 and Q1 2022:
Fundraising totaled $3.209 billion in the first quarter of 2021.
Fundraising totaled $2.796 billion in the first quarter of 2022.
If you’re looking at the two numbers and wondering why we’re not making a big deal about a $400 million year-over-year drop, we can help. Crunchbase, PitchBook, and CB Insights’ venture capital data needs to deal with the speed and breadth of private-market disclosures, which differ from what public businesses release. They’re sluggish and incomplete. As a result, we anticipate the Q1 2022 number to “fill in” over time, bringing it closer to the year-ago comparable.
The fact that insurtech funding has not collapsed is more important than any movement in the dollar amount. It is, in fact, still chugging ahead. We believe this is good news for the startups that are currently operating in the area. Let’s talk about it.