Nationwide, eyeing the possibilities with Planck’s AI-driven commercial insurance data platform, joined the company’s latest financing round.

Planck recently raised $16 million in a Series B venture financing round led by Team8 Capital. All existing investors including Viola FinTech, Arbor Ventures and Eight Roads also participated. As well, Nationwide and HDI Group joined on as strategic investors.

To date, Planck has raised $28 million overall. Plans call for using the money to help accelerate the expansion of Planck’s U.S. customer base and global reach, with plans to open in Germany in 2021. As well, the company will focus on developing new products.

Planck believes its technology will help commercial insurers increase commercial premiums at the same time they reduce loss and expense by streamlining the underwriting process. The company says its technology provides real-time data insights for small-and medium-sized businesses, a premise that Nationwide said drew its attention.

“AI assists underwriters in making faster and more efficient decisions, which accelerates the underwriting process and frees them up to spend time on things like rethinking coverage needs for their customers or building stronger broker and agent relationships,” Tony Fenton, Nationwide’s vice-president of Commercial Digitization and New Product Development, said in prepared remarks. “Nationwide recognizes the potential of AI data technology to help carriers and agents keep up with customer demands for efficiency and accuracy.”

Nationwide said that Planck’s technology has helped quicken and sharpen carriers’ ability to underwrite risk for business segments and insurance lines including restaurants, bars, taverns, contractors, beauty salons, manufacturing and insurance lines such as Workers Compensation, General Liability and Employment Practice Liability.

Erik Ross, leader of Nationwide’s venture capital and M&A teams, said that the company had looked at other platforms before investing in Planck.

“After assessing several companies in the marketplace, we quickly determined Planck’s AI platform provides faster and more consistent data for commercial insurers like Nationwide,” Ross said in prepared remarks.

Planck said it has worked with a number of U.S. commercial insurers, including Chubb, Great American Insurance Group’s Republic Indemnity, AIG’s Attune and others.

Planck noted that the financing round came during the pandemic, a period of uncertainty for insurers and their customers alike. Planck co-founder and CEO Elad Tsur said in prepared remarks that the company is well positioned to give clients what they need as the pandemic rages on.

“Identifying the actual risk factors is the core of insurance,” Tsur said. “We are grateful for the opportunity to help our customers understand the changes in their books and business that have occurred in the last couple of months, due to the COVID-19 breakout.”

Planck launched in 2016. The InsurTech startup is based in Israel with offices in New York.

Sources: Planck, Nationwide