India has a new unicorn. Digital insurance company ACKO has raised a fresh $255 million in funding led by General Atlantic and Multiples Private Equity at a valuation of $1.1 billion. The investment was also backed by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Lightspeed and existing investors Intact Ventures and Munich Re Ventures.
ACKO had last secured $60 million in funding in September last year at an estimated valuation of $500 million. In all, the startup has now amassed close to $450 million from investors. The firm counts Amazon, Accel, Ascent Capital and Flipkart co-founder among its early backers.
Founded in 2016 by Varun Dua and Ruchi Deepak, the Bengaluru-based insurtech startup today has a strong footprint in the local direct-to-consumer auto insurance space. It also offers embedded insurance products like mobility and gadget insurance across a clutch of digital consumer platforms, including Amazon, MakeMyTrip and Ola. ACKO caters to over 70 million customers—claiming to clock a run-rate of nearly $150 million in premiums.
The startup is betting big on the health insurance vertical. Having entered the segment last year, it is still a nascent one for the firm. The company has earmarked investments worth more than $150 million for the healthcare business, and a good portion of the fresh capital will be used to build on the growth of the segment. The firm also plans to scale up its overall team, particularly within technology, product, and data science divisions.
“ACKO has developed a differentiated and scalable business model based on a singular customer focus, value-based pricing, highly-rated service and deep technology capabilities. Insurance is a large, fundamental sector in any economy, and in India specifically, the country is witnessing a rapid change of pace with rising customer expectations and technological innovation—requiring a fresh approach towards insurance product design, distribution and servicing,” says Shantanu Rastogi, managing director at General Atlantic.