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Nationwide has announced that it is expanding its venture capital investment efforts to $350 million. A company statements says the funding will be directed into select high-growth potential insurance and financial services startups whose solutions, technology, and capabilities can benefit Nationwide customers.
“We have had tremendous interest from startups to partner with us and help them accelerate their success—not only through our capital but also our brand and expertise,” comments Kirt Walker, CEO, Nationwide. CEO Kirt Walker. “Nationwide’s history is built on numerous breakthroughs. We’re excited about the opportunities to identify and accelerate InsurTech and Fintech solutions that will help better protect people, businesses and futures with extraordinary care.”In its statement about its expanded investment efforts, Nationwide says it is “doubling down” on its venture capital investment efforts. To put it more literally, Nationwide is more than tripling its initial allocation. The company more formed its ventures team in 2015, and two years later announced the creation of a $100 million venture capital investment fund aimed at investing in InsurTech and Fintech startups supporting six thematic areas. The insurer described the thematic areas as follows:
Home Solutions: Assist our members in better protecting and managing their most valuable assets through alternative data and analytics, risk intervention technologies, and home services solutions.
Living in Retirement: Deliver products and services to help consumers prepare for and live better in their next stage of life.
Small-and-medium sized businesses: Enhance current products and solutions that protect small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and take the friction out of the value chain while helping them operate efficiently.
Telematics and Fleet Management: Provide services for consumers or businesses utilizing new types of mobility, vehicle connectivity, and telematics.
Cybersecurity and risk: Protect businesses and consumers from new and evolving digital exposures, risks, and attacks.
To date, Nationwide’s venture capital team has invested in 25 companies and has helped facilitate 31 partnerships between startups and Nationwide business units. The startups the carrier has invested in include Betterview, HOVER, Indico, Deep Sentinel, Planck, Upstream Security, KINETIC, Vesta Health Care, Socotra, Nexar, BlueVine, blooom, Insurify, Next Insurance, Matic, Flo Technologies, Vestwell, Snapsheet, Sure, and NewRetirement.
“Nationwide’s initial venture capital investments continue to unlock new sources of value – both to Nationwide and the startups with which we partner,” comments Mike Mahaffey, Chief Strategy and Corporate Development Officer, Nationwide. “Our ventures team has developed and implemented a successful strategy of identifying the strongest companies in which to invest – ones that have already begun producing products and solutions to help our customers and distribution partners. These additional funds will enable the venture team to expand and accelerate that work.”
“Our strong relationships with our business partners give us a clear advantage in our venture capital investments,” comments Erik Ross, leader of Nationwide’s venture capital team. “We focus on startups that can help meet the ever-changing needs of Nationwide’s customers. In addition to delivering strong financial returns, the venture capital team has proven to be a trusted partner to Nationwide’s business units, collaborating with great entrepreneurs to bring mutually beneficial partnerships to life. Our business partners and our founders are our customers and best references – we’ll continue to do our best to help them both be successful.”