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Billionaire Richard Li-Backed Singapore Insurtech Unicorn Bolttech Adds $50 Million To Series B



Singapore-based Bolttech, backed by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, raised an additional $50 million in Series B funding for a total of $246 million—which it says is the largest ever Series B round for an insurtech.

The additional funding came from LeapFrog Investments, a Temasek-backed private equity firm focused on financial servives and healthcare. “Bolttech shares LeapFrog’s vision of making essential financial solutions more affordable and accessible, especially for the many emerging consumers in growth markets,” said Fernanda Lima, partner and co-head of LeapFrog’s Asia financial services team, in a statement. On the back of the extension, Bolttech said it will appoint Lima to its board as a non-executive director.

Launched in 2020, Bolttech operates as a digital insurance exchange, connecting businesses with insurers and other distributors. Businesses can purchase insurance coverage for their customers on everything from health to gadgets. Its clients include Korean tech giant Samsung, which uses Bolttech to offer device protection insurance at points of sale. The startup claims its online platform supports over 6,000 insurance products from 230 insurers and 700 distribution partners, with $55 billion worth of annualized premiums.

Bolttech says the new funding will go towards its global growth strategy, with a focus on countries such as Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. Bolttech currently serves more than 30 markets across three continents and more than two million “emerging consumers,” which the startup defines as individuals living on less than $11.20 purchasing power parity (PPP) a day. When asked whether Bolttech is profitable, a representative told Forbes Asia the startup has “established a strong financial position” and has “a clear path to profitability.”

Other backers of Bolttech include Richard Li’s investment firm Pacific Century Group, Singaporean government investment vehicle EDBI, Spanish VC fund Mundi Ventures and San Francisco-based VC firm Activant Capital. Li serves as chairman of Bolttech and his Pacific Century Group also controls life insurance company FWD, where Bolttech’s group CEO, Rob Schimek, was managing director and group chief commercial officer. To date, Bolttech has raised $493 million.

Tech adoption in the South and Southeast Asian insurance industries has accelerated following the pandemic, according to a March report from S&P Global Ratings, as factors such as improved risk awareness and financial literacy have fuelled demand for insurance. However, this adoption remains a “slow burn,” as traditional distribution models that emphasize in-person interaction will remain key for at least the next decade, the report added.

Aside from Bolttech, rising insurtech startups have emerged across Asia. Three earned spots on this year’s Forbes Asia 100 to Watch list: Hong Kong-based Bowtie, which announced it raised a $34.9 million Series B2 funding round last week; Lima Tech, which develops software tools for Chinese insurance companies such as PICC, China Taiping and Ping An; and PolicyStreet, which has raised a total of $22 million from investors including Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund, Khazanah Nasional.


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Source: Fox Business


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