(Image source: Breathe Life homepage.)
Breathe Life, a Montreal-based provider of consumer-centric digital solutions for the insurance industry, has raised an additional $11.5 million CAD in funding to enhance its digital distribution platform for insurance carriers. The $6.5 million Series A was co-led by Real Ventures & Investissement Québec (both of Montreal) with participation from Clocktower Technology Ventures (Santa Monica, Calif.), Cameron Ventures (Oklahoma City), Desjardins (Quebec), NAventures (Montreal), and Diagram Ventures (Montreal). The remaining $5 million is made up of a $4.2 million debt financing from National Bank of Canada’s Technology and Innovation Banking Group and various government grants. Breathe Life announced a $4.5 million CAD seed round in Feb. 2019.
Breathe Life provides insurers a modern digital platform for the distribution of life insurance products that is designed to increase sales and speed of policy delivery while reducing operational costs. Breathe Life says its platform enables carriers to quickly deliver a fully-branded, user-centric experience that streamlines the online buying process for consumers. The vendor says this “ease of engagement” is especially important as carriers continue to navigate the global coronavirus pandemic, which has largely eliminated traditional face-to-face sales and paper-based distribution processes.
“In our current global context there is an increased need to develop digital services in all sectors, and we’re convinced that this promising Montreal company will play an important role in bringing innovation to the insurance industry,” comments Guy LeBlanc, President and CEO, Investissement Québec. “Our investment in Breathe Life reaffirms Investissement Québec’s leadership role among Québec-based venture capital and private investors.”
Breathe Life says its omnichannel platform breaks through data silos to unify customer information into a single profile, making it easier to convert leads to policies across products and channels. Advanced analytics and machine learning continuously provide recommendations on product and market opportunities to help grow customer-lifetime value. “Today, carriers across the U.S. and Canada are using the platform to achieve double-digit sales and premium increases while reducing customer acquisition costs by almost a third,” a company statement asserts.
“Until recently, the insurance industry has approached digital transformation as a multi-year effort,” comments John Stokes, Partner, Real Ventures. “If the last six months have taught the industry anything, it’s that the time to go digital is now. Breathe Life has a proven track record helping carriers across North America quickly deliver high-quality digital experiences to consumers that drive growth while also generating valuable, data-driven insights back to the business.”
Next Phase of Growth
“Our Group is pleased to partner with some of the greatest Canadian success stories, and we believe Breathe Life will be among them,” says Mathieu Apuzzo, Senior Director, Technology and Innovation Banking Group, National Bank of Canada. “Our partnership with Breathe Life goes back to their early days, and we’re proud to support them in this next phase of growth. We’re thrilled to promote innovation in a space that is increasingly dynamic and rich with investment opportunities. We share the passion the Breathe Life team puts in every day and are very excited about their bright future.”
“Everything that has happened this momentous year has raised the stakes for carriers, forcing them to quickly and effectively modernize their operations to meet the pressing financial-security needs of billions of consumers worldwide,” comments Ian Jeffrey, CEO of Breathe Life. “Helping consumers engage online—and making it easy for advisors to help them there—is no longer a ‘nice to have,’ but an urgent requirement of the new normal. Breathe Life is empowering carriers to transform now. Using our digital distribution platform, carriers can quickly attract, service, and win new business cost-effectively across channels.”