US based e-commerce giant Amazon has led a $12 million ( ~ ₹81.27 crore) funding round in Acko Technologies, which is a digital-only insurance startup headquartered in Mumbai, reported ET Tech. The financing round also saw the participation of Ashish Dhawan, the founder of PE firm ChrysCapital, and existing backer Catamaran Ventures.
www.indianweb2.com first reported that Amazon is close to invest in Acko, in January this year.
With this, Acko becomes Amazon’s first investment in India’s insurance services sector. Prior to this, Amazon had invested $22 million in Capital Float, a Bengaluru headquartered digital lending startup, last month. In 2015, Amazon also picked up a minority stake in financial services marketplace BankBazaar.
Founded in 2017 by Varun Dua, who is also founder & CEO of Coverfox.com, Acko Technologies is a parent company of Acko General Insurance.
In May 2017, Acko had received $30 million (about ₹200 crore) even before its launch and it was also touted to be one of the largest seed rounds for the Indian startup ecosystem.
Last month, Acko launched in-trip insurance program for riders of cab hailing firm Ola across more than 110 cities in India. Through this, Acko covers riders for obvious items like minor accidents, and eventualities like missing a flight due to traffic delays. The insurance claim system is built into the Ola app to simplify the process for users.
“We will be beefing up the technology. It’s heavily intensive, both, operationally and technology-wise to set up claims across the country…The other thing will be to scale up our marketing efforts and the business overall,” Varun Dua, chief executive of Acko, told a business daily.
Speaking about this investment, Amit Agarwal, senior vice president and country manager at Amazon India, said in a statement: “Acko is a young and nimble startup bringing technology and data-led innovation to the insurance sector to deliver a better insurance experience for customers.”
“We are excited to back companies that are focused on using technology for enhanced customer experience and are led by missionary founders and management teams,” he added.
[Top Image – Varun Dua | Image Source – BWDisrupt.businessworld.in]