One of the best parts of starting a business in a tech hub like Toronto is the amount of personalized help and mentorship a startup can receive, even in relatively niche areas.
OneEleven and Aviva Canada are teaming up to launch the InsurTech Growth Program, a brand new initiative that will look to help and guide Canadian startups rooted in the insurance industry. The intensive program will help six companies that offer a solution or service relating to insuretech (insurance tech) and give them the opportunity to drive innovation the sector. The entire program will last four months total.
Though it may be a specialized industry, insurtech is booming as 74 per cent of insurers believe their companies will be disrupted by some kind of new innovation in the next three years.
In order to be eligible for the program, a startup must have some proven traction in the market and offer innovative and competitive technology, as well as $300,000 in seed funding revenue generated. The company must also of course have a clear partnership or involvement with the insurance industry and align with one or more of these categories: micro-insurance, disruptive distribution, warranty solution, data and analytics, new insurance products and propositions, fintech/AI, disruptive mobility, new marketing channels, product recommendation engines and/or real-time simulations
The new program will focus on scaling the development of smaller startups while introducing them to key players within the scene. This will also come with some unique perks, like one-on-one mentoring with Aviva executives and access to the OneEleven community that features big names in the Canadian tech industry such as Wealthsimple, Zoom.ai and Tulip Retail.
Other perks of the Insurtech Growth Program are monthly progress check-ins, pitch feedback, a final pitch to demonstrate progress and business evolution, and an opportunity to connect with the managing director of Aviva Ventures, Ben Luckett. Aviva Ventures typically offers equity funding between one to five million and has a portfolio of investments which includes Cocoon.
The important factor to consider here is that the program is designed for startups in the insurance space that want to have the ability to work with a behemoth in the space, Aviva. The Canadian subsidiary alone has more than 2.8 million customers and employs more than 4,000 people. The partnership with OneEleven, one of North America’s largest scale-up innovation hub, is natural as they work together to find new and cutting-edge talent.
The application period closes March 4 and selected applicants will pitch in-person on March 14. The final pitch to Aviva Ventures will be on July 18.