Insurtech startup Relay Platform lands $5.2m in seed funding

Toronto-based insurance technology startup Relay Platform has secured $5.2 million in a seed-stage financing.

Toronto-based insurance technology startup Relay Platform has secured $5.2 million in a seed-stage financing. The round, which brings total funding to $8.25 million, was led by Drive Capital, with participation from Highline Beta. Relay provides a software-as-a-service solution for property and casualty insurance and reinsurance placements.

PRESS RELEASE

Toronto, ON – May 3, 2021 – Relay Platform (Relay), a global property and casualty (P&C) Quote-Bind-Issue portal provider raised $5.2 million USD in seed financing. This follows a pre-seed SAFE round in January 2020, for a total of $8.25 million USD in financing to date.
The round is led by Drive Capital, a Columbus-based venture capital firm that is investing in the world’s next generation of market-defining companies, with participation from Highline Beta, the Canadian venture capital firm that incubated Relay. Since Drive’s founding in 2012 by former Sequoia Capital partners Chris Olsen and Mark Kvamme, the firm has raised $1B of funds to invest in startups solving important problems in large markets. Previous Drive Capital insurtech investments include Root Insurance (IPO’d in 2020), Circulo, and Battleface.

Working on top of traditional policy administration systems, Relay’s white label solution is used daily by retail/wholesale brokers and cedents across commercial lines. With Relay, they tackle the challenges of securing competitive quotes in hardening markets, remarketing more business profitably, and boosting quote-to-bind ratios and renewal rates. Management teams are embracing the solution to streamline placements, improve margins, and extend their market reach.

Relay accelerates the insurance transaction and automates the client proposal for brokers. It does this by combining quotes from carriers, MGA-MGUs, and reinsurers from any source and in any format. Quotes can originate from human underwriters or from automated, instant-quoting systems, and Relay will deliver them as dynamic, fully customizable, client-ready proposal documents. This solution is unique in today’s marketplace.

Relay’s capabilities position the venture to equip brokers with Proposal Analytics and Smart Recommendations. Powered by Machine Learning, Relay will point out policies and prices most likely to be accepted by clients and prospects, as well as cross-selling and up-selling opportunities.

Originating in reinsurance, Relay supports both high-ticket and high-volume placements across a wide range of industry participants in all commercial lines. Current implementations tackle Cyber, Executive Risk, Professional Liability, Commercial Property, Private Clients, Terrorism, Financial Institutions, and Surety.

“The coronavirus crisis triggered a fundamental shift in behaviours and expectations from brokers and their clients, pushing the need for a user-centric placement solution to the top of boardrooms’ and executive teams’ agendas,” said Chris Olsen, Co-Founder and Partner at Drive Capital. “With digital solutions rapidly reinventing how insurance and reinsurance are sourced and sold, a unique opportunity opened up for a universal, digital placement solution that augments the in-depth experience of industry professionals while addressing the significant gap in business insurance coverage. We believe Relay is that solution, and are looking forward to the immense potential ahead.”

Greg Boutin, Relay Platform’s CEO, comments that “This new round will enable us to better serve the retail and wholesale brokerages, MGA and MGUs, carriers, and reinsurers whom we already count as clients and users in the US, UK, Canada, and the Middle East. We will extend our distribution and deliver on our promise of a smarter, faster, leaner solution that unbolts game-changing results for our ecosystem partners. We cannot think of a more formidable partner than Drive Capital to unlock the next step in realizing our vision.”

About Relay
Relay is the only white-label, single-entry multi-carrier comp-rating solution that can handle all P&C lines, across all mediums including both APIs and email quoting, at any level of complexity, with the fastest rate of API integrations and an economic model that aligns retail/wholesale brokers, MGA and MGUs, carriers and reinsurers. The platform boosts success rates on both new and renewal businesses, unlocks cross-selling opportunities, and significantly reduces times to quotes, proposals, and binders. Relay, an Insurtech100 and Insurtech North winner, proved its model with over $2.15 billion bound since its 2020 product launch.

Visit www.relayplatform.com to learn more.

About Drive Capital
Drive Capital is a Columbus-based venture capital firm that is focused on investing in the world’s next generation of market-defining companies. The firm started in 2013 and raised more than $1B of funds to invest in startups solving important problems in large markets. Drive is an investor in more than 40 companies outside of Silicon Valley, including Root Insurance, Duolingo, Cyclica, ApplyBoard, and KOHO.
Visit www.drivecapital.com to learn more.