Digital Insurer Startup Wefox Seeks Funding at Over $5 Billion Value


Wefox, the German digital insurer, is in advanced discussions to raise fresh funding at a valuation of $5 billion to $6 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The Berlin-based insurtech startup is aiming to raise several hundred million dollars, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Wefox may finalize terms of the fundraising as soon as the next few weeks, according to the people.

Wefox would be nearly doubling its valuation from last year, when it raised $650 million in a Series C round valuing the company at $3 billion. The company’s existing investors include Abu Dhabi sovereign fund Mubadala Investment Co., Salesforce Ventures, Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures and Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing’s Horizons Ventures.

The latest fundraising comes amid a challenging backdrop for the technology industry, with startups globally struggling to attract capital as investors shy away from riskier bets. Sequoia Capital recently warned portfolio company executives that the good times were over, and Lux Capital told founders that job cuts would be needed as “the world is falling apart.”

There’s no certainty the discussions will lead to an agreement, and terms of Wefox’s fundraising could change, the people said. A representative for Wefox declined to comment.

Julian Teicke, a former Groupon Inc. sales manager, founded Wefox in 2014 with entrepreneurs including former Deutsche Bank AG analyst Fabian Wesemann. The company offers insurance products in markets including Germany, Italy and Switzerland, according to its website.

Wefox has carved out a different niche in the insurtech space, opting to distribute its insurance policies through a network of agents rather than hawking its products directly to consumers like some other startups. Munich Re AG backs Wefox’s policies with reinsurance coverage and also provides know-how and infrastructure.

–With assistance from Ruth David.

Photo: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Topics
Mergers & Acquisitions
Carriers
InsurTech
Startups

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