Regional Insurtech Firm Igloo Promotes Raunak Mehta to Co-Founder & CEO to Drive Southeast Asia Expansion

Regional insurtech firm, Igloo, has announced the promotion of Raunak Mehta, previously Chief Commercial Officer as its new Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO). He will work alongside co-founder of Igloo, Wei Zhu, who is on the company’s board of directors.

Raunak has extensive experience in the e-commerce and technology space, having held leadership roles at Asia’s biggest e-commerce brands Flipkart and Zalora. Since joining Igloo in 2018, he has spearheaded its market entry into The Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia and Malaysia. while establishing partnerships with industry leaders such as Lazada, Shopee, Bukalapak, AIS, RedDoorz, foodpanda, Lotte Finance and Ahamove across a range of insurance products.

Igloo has continued to expand in a tough macro environment, nearly tripling its Gross Written Premium facilitation in 2021. With more than 30 marquee partnerships and an ever-increasing regional footprint, Igloo is on track to achieve its goal of facilitating five percent of General Insurance Premiums in the region over the next five years. In 2021 alone, Igloo’s insurance solutions helped underwrite over 75 million policies in Southeast Asia.

“It’s heartening to see the company grow so quickly, and to continue to enjoy the backing of a strong pool of investors,” said Wei Zhu, Co-founder and member of the board of directors. “With his diverse knowledge across industries and experienced leadership, Raunak will play an instrumental role as Igloo continues to scale. I’m confident we are in a strong position to be the leading regional insurtech under Raunak’s leadership. I’m delighted to continue to play a part in Igloo’s growth and evolution as part of its board,” added Wei.

Igloo is well positioned to capture the immense opportunity provided by Southeast Asia’s burgeoning digital economy, which is expected to hit US$360 billion in 2025, according to Bain, Google and Temasek’s e-conomy report. The growth of the region’s digital economy has also catalysed a need for digital insurance products such as cybersecurity and e-wallet insurance, which has opened up a US$10 billion opportunity for digital players and insurance companies in the region.

Raunak Mehta, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, shared, “Igloo has seen tremendous growth in 2021, where we drove an aggressive market entry strategy helped by our strong company fundamentals – grounded in people and technology. As the only regional insurtech with a diverse set of products and partners, Igloo will continue on its aggressive growth trajectory for the foreseeable future, looking at both organic and inorganic ways to further drive its vision of ‘Insurance for All’. With the continued backing of our investors, we are well-positioned to expand our operations in countries like Vietnam, The Philippines, and Malaysia, and provide a highly localised offering for each Southeast Asian market.”

Launches AI-Powered Technology Solution, Ignite by Igloo

Recently, Igloo launched a new app — Ignite by Igloo, to streamline the insurance sales journey for agents and direct intermediaries. An AI-powered platform, Ignite by Igloo aims to enhance the sellers’ productivity by creating a smoother and more efficient sales process. Ignite offers an accessible online solution that brings together multiple insurance products on a single platform and supports agents to improve customer engagement and manage products to better address customer needs. Direct sales intermediaries across sectors who want to offer protection solutions to their customers will also benefit from the platform.

Igloo Closes US$19 Million Series B Round

In conjunction with the new appointments, Igloo also announced that it has raised US$19 million in Series B funding led by Cathay Innovation, a global venture capital firm, with participation from ACA and other existing investors including Openspace. This brings Igloo’s total fundraising to over US$36 million.

“COVID was a watershed moment for the entire insurtech industry as the pandemic further emphasised the need to bring insurance to a wider audience. Under the stewardship of Raunak, Igloo responded with creativity and pace, and has now captured a leading share of the regional market. We’ve been active partners since 2018, and it was encouraging to see the team come together and find opportunities amidst the tumult,” said Ian Sikora, Executive Director at Openspace and board member.

“At Cathay we are firm believers in financial access and inclusion for Southeast Asia and so Igloo’s mission is one which deeply resonates with us on many levels. We have been honoured to be part of the journey, witnessing Raunak and the team build from strength to strength, expanding regionally at breakneck speed all while navigating COVID. We are incredibly excited for what is to come next for the team at Igloo.” said Rajive Keshup, Director for Cathay Innovation in Southeast Asia and board member.

With its Series B raise, Igloo plans to drive product innovation cementing itself as one of the region’s leading insurtech firms. Igloo will continue to invest in reinforcing its full-stack capabilities, along with innovating its dynamic risk assessment and AI-powered claims assessment tools. In line with Igloo’s vision of ‘Insurance for All’, Igloo’s product development and distribution focus will be further targeting the underinsured low to mid-income population segments in Southeast Asia. It is building scalable and interoperable technological capabilities to be offered to Igloo’s insurance partners via an open platform. In addition to technology innovation, usage of funds will also focus on acquiring intermediary assets which bring synergies to Igloo’s business model.

17 March 2022

Author: Terry KS

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