Global Insurance Accelerator Announces New Funding Structure for Future Cohorts

Analysis of the evolving InsurTech landscape revealed a need to provide increased benefits for startups.

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The Global Insurance Accelerator (GIA), a Des Moines, Iowa-based InsurTech accelerator focused on supporting and promoting innovation for the insurance industry, has announced changes to its funding structure beginning with the 2020 cohort.

Nicole Gunderson, Managing Director, GIA.

Since its founding in 2014, the 36 startups accepted into the GIA’s annual 100-day program have received $40,000 each in seed funding in exchange for six percent common equity, as well as housing for at least one representative from each company. Beginning with the 2020 cohort, the GIA will increase the seed investment to $75,000 in the form of a post-money Simple Agreement for Future Equity (SAFE) which converts to five percent of the company. By nearly doubling the investment, housing for participants will now be covered in entirety by the seed investment, while other program benefits will continue to include curated meetings with 75+ insurance-focused mentors, office space, relevant educational sessions, exposure at industry conferences, and the opportunity to present at the Global Insurance Symposium with 600+ insurance industry professionals in attendance, the GIA reports.

The GIA also provides alumni companies with ongoing support following the completion of the program, and recently assisted 18 alumni companies who participated in InsureTech Connect, the industry’s largest networking event, which concluded in Las Vegas on September 25.

Increased Competition in the Accelerator Landscape

“The GIA was established at the very forefront of the InsurTech movement,” comments Nicole Gunderson, managing director for the GIA. “The funding and perks provided for startups at that time was more than equivalent to other accelerators in the industry, but like any startup, we’ve learned a lot in our first five years and need to continue to evolve and scale. Today, there is increased competition in the accelerator landscape, and our goal with this change is to provide a founder- and investor-friendly, standard market structure.”

The GIA reports that the decision to increase program benefits for future cohorts was voted on and approved by the 13 insurer investor members of the GIA board, including representatives from Allstate, American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company, Delta Dental of Iowa, EMC Insurance, Farm Bureau Financial Services, Farmers Mutual Hail, Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company, Global Atlantic Financial Group, IMT Insurance Company, Markel Corporation, Mutual of Omaha, Principal Financial, and SFM.

The organization also announced that applications for the 2020 cohort open today via the GIA website at www.globalinsuranceaccelerator.com.

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Anthony R. O’Donnell // Anthony O'Donnell is Executive Editor of Insurance Innovation Reporter. For nearly two decades, he has been an observer and commentator on the use of information technology in the insurance industry, following industry trends and writing about the use of IT across all sectors of the insurance industry. He can be reached at [email protected] or (503) 936-2803.

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