Startups

Insurtech Unicorn Hippo Raises $150M

Insurtech startup Hippo raised $150 million in a new round of funding, bringing its valuation to $1.5 billion.

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The new funding will be used for expansion, hiring, investment into the company’s tech operations, and to help support its proposed acquisition of an insurance carrier, according to a statement from the company. Hippo has a goal of reaching 95 percent of U.S. homeowners in the next year.

Hippo uses technology to evaluate a home during the onboarding process and uses features like thermal and satellite imagery to monitor changes to a homeowner’s property over time. It also has a smart home program–the company will provide smart home devices to homeowners, which will alert them of things like water leaks.

New investors in the Series E round include FinTLV Ventures, Ribbit Capital, Dragoneer Investment Group and Innovius Capital. The company last raised money in July 2019 with its $100 million Series D led by Bond, per Crunchbase.

Hippo seems to be doubling down on growth. The company announced plans to acquire Spinnaker Insurance Company last month, and has an “aggressive hiring plan” for its Palo Alto headquarters, as well as its offices in Austin and Dallas, according to the statement. It will also be expanding its presence in Austin with a new campus that can hold up to 310 employees.

The company says it started selling its insurance policies to homeowners in 2017 in California, and is now available in 29 states.

Recorded sales growth of 60 percent year-over-year in Q2 of 2020, is something Hippo attributes to many people staying home amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the last year, the company’s written premiums grew to $270 million, representing 140 percent year-over-year growth, according to the statement.

Hippo’s among a number of insurance tech companies that have gained steam in recent years. Most recently, insurtech company Lemonade, which offers homeowners, renters and pet insurance, went public and saw its stock surge.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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