The Zebra, an online auto insurance comparison company, said it has closed $17 million in Series A funding with investment from Mark Cuban, Mike Maples Jr. (of Twitter and Lyft), Simon Nixon (of Moneysupermarket), Silverton Partners, and new investors Daher Capital and Ballast Point Ventures.
This latest round brings Austin-based Zebra’s total funding to date to $21 million.
The news continues a surge in insurance tech startup funding that reached $2.65 billion in 2015, up from $740 million in 2014, according to CB Insights Venture Capital database. Funding for instech jumped 45 percent in the fourth quarter of last year, CN Insights reported.
The Zebra claims it provided 3.5 million unique drivers with customized quotes and from 40 top insurers during the past year.
The Zebra said it plans to use the capital to enhance its product offering, strengthen partnerships with insurance carriers, and expand its team.
Zebra’s founders claim they are out to disrupt what they say is an outdated U.S. car insurance industry by empowering “informed consumer behavior.”
“These antiquated distribution models require innovation. Today, consumers expect optionality and speed in nearly every area of their lives, and now technology allows us to create the tools needed for insurers and consumers,” said CEO Adam Lyons.
“Insurance shopping is a major pain point for the 250 million-plus U.S. drivers on the road,” said investor Mike Maples Jr. in the announcement “With The Zebra, we’re demystifying an opaque insurance industry and simplifying that process in a way that serves both drivers and insurance companies.”
The Zebra allows drivers to compare side-by-side customized quotes from insurance companies across all 50 states. It also provides resources for drivers to evaluate companies based on coverage, customer reviews, claims satisfaction and other criteria.
The Zebra claims that it saves drivers an average of $368 per year.
*This story ran previously in our sister publication Insurance Journal.