Venture

Ohio Unicorn Root Insurance Rolls On With $350M In New Cash

Root Insurance, a car insurance startup that uses your smartphone to track driving behavior, has raised a $350 million Series E round led by DST Global and Coatue, confirming last month’s report.The company now has $523 million in funding to date, bringing its valuation to $3.65 billion, according to a press release.

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Founded in 2015, the Ohio-based startup brands itself as the “modern alternative to legacy [auto insurance carriers].” It will use the new capital to continue product innovation and build upon growth strategy.

Our late stage reporter Sophia Kunthara broke down how Root works for us back in August, and you can all those details here. As a quick recap, however,  Root uses your smartphone to see how well you drive, measuring movements like braking, route regularity, and the speed at which you turn to see if you’re a safe driver. This differs from traditional insurance companies which take into account your age, location, and the distance you’re driving to determine how much you should pay for car insurance.

Root claims that its method is up to 52 percent cheaper than traditional insurance.

The company says it wrote more than $187 million in insurance premiums in the first six months of 2019, 824 percent growth over the same period in 2018. Additionally, it has expanded into 29 states.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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