Irish mobility startup partners with UK insurtech Zego
The company which is based in Galway launched in 2019 and made the headlines after providing zero-carbon emission transport options to health workers at the height of the pandemic last year. Unable to travel on public transport due to potential infection, Brite put their fleet of eco-friendly vehicles at health workers disposal.
Now the company has teamed up with Zego and is looking to expand its fleet across Ireland.
Zego is also a startup but was founded in 2016 and specialises in usage-based insurance for fleets. The insurtech’s solutions are priced on real fleet usage data rather than guesswork and its current market includes courier fleets, private hire and new mobility operators.
Zego currently leads the UK kick scooter insurance market, and its presence in the Irish market was formed through partnerships with its ride-hailing firms. The company also recently became the first UK insurtech to obtain a European broking license, helping it to grow in EU territories.
The collaboration between the insurtech, Zego and Brite, means that businesses, university campuses and delivery services that use its fleet of e-vehicles will be automatically insured.
The move also makes Brite the first micro-mobility company in Ireland to provide full coverage to its riders.
Zego data sharing
The new relationship between Zego and Brite enables the companies to share trip data, which will help the insurtech to price its insurance based on usage with pay-as-you-go options rather than blanket cover.
The flexibility in Zego’s product will positively support Brite’s cash flow, reducing large upfront costs and freeing up funds which can then be utilised for growth, expansion, and future product innovations.
When Brite launched in 2019, it began providing zero-carbon shared vehicles to businesses, delivery services and university campuses in several cities across Ireland and Northern Ireland. The enterprise has plans to increase its fleet over the next 12 months after the Irish Government’s announcement to draft legislation on e-scooter and e-bike regulation.
Brite has offered its support on this legislation and has requested a call for minimum safety standards, including comprehensive insurance for riders, which Brite now provides with its Zego partnership.
Colin Barry, CEO and founder of Brite Mobility, explained, “The team at Zego has helped us address key safety concerns around our network connected e-scooters, e-bikes and e-mopeds which has allowed us to focus on running our business and achieving our goals.”
Barry added, “We’re big believers that adopting micro mobility services will help corporations, governments, and others not only achieve their carbon emission goals but also move their people around in a safe and efficient manner, without having to deal with traffic and the costs associated with parking cars and vans in our cities.”
Ines Feracci, director of B2B at Zego said, “Micro-mobility has become a hot topic as businesses and consumers around the globe shift their focus to reducing carbon emissions and making more sustainable choices.
Feracci concluded, “It is companies like Brite that are going to help our cities become far more sustainable over time, particularly in Ireland. At Zego, we are pleased to be aligned with these types of businesses, and are looking forward to a long-lasting relationship with Brite.”
Global investment in insurtech reaches all-time high
Global investment in the InsurTech sector reached an emphatic record during H1, 2021, as half-year funding of US$7.4 billion exceeded full-year investment in 2020, and in every other year, according to the new Quarterly InsurTech Briefing from Willis Towers Watson.
It was found that the latest quarter saw 162 deals yield more than $4,824 million in investment, a 210% increase over Q2, 2020. The enormous quarterly total, itself more than any annual total before 2019, was driven largely by 15 mega-rounds of $100 million or more. Collectively, these deals reached $3.3 billion, or two-thirds of total funding during the quarter. The money was raised predominantly by later-stage players seeking expansion.
A need for the insurance community to reflect digital changes
Series B and C fundraisings drove a large number of deals in the second quarter, but the number of early-stage deals also increased. They were up by more than 9% from the previous quarter, and 200% from pandemic-stricken Q2, 2020. As a percentage of overall deals, early-stage activity held roughly steady, at 57%.
InsurTechs focused on distribution accounted for 55% of start-up deals, and for 10 of the 15 mega-rounds. Most of the distribution InsurTechs target reduced dependence on agent channels. Of all Q2 deals, 73% were for P&C-related InsurTechs, while 43 companies raised funds for L&H technology. Funds were raised by companies from 35 countries, including new entrants Botswana, Mali, Romania, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.
Dr. Andrew Johnston, global head of InsurTech at Willis Re, said: “As technology changes our lives, society will demand an insurance community that reflects and supports our changing, digitally empowered behaviours. Consumers and businesses increasingly expect insurance to be delivered when and how they want it, and risk carriers that fail to respond will fall away over time. To embrace technology is a minimum survival condition. Those that use it to redefine service in the insurance world will thrive. That means a positive future for InsurTechs that bring a truly differentiated business approach to our industry. Some of them will create untold long-term opportunities for themselves and the insurance sector.”