A Chicago startup that uses artificial intelligence to help you buy car insurance just emerged from stealth mode, and raised $11.5 million from a handful of notable investors.
Clearcover, founded by a former VC at American Family Insurance, has built a technology platform that lets people buy car insurance efficiently and at a lower cost. The round of funding was led by Lightbank, with participation from Greycroft Partners, 500 Startups and Silicon Valley Bank.
Clearcover says it uses artificial intelligence to make custom coverage recommendations for customers, and it can save people up to 50% on car insurance compared to traditional players like State Farm and Allstate.
It can do that by eliminating the overhead that brick-and-mortar insurers take on, and it doesn’t spend money on expensive ads, celebrity spokespeople or outdated technology, said CEO and Founder Kyle Nakatsuji, who left his role at American Family Insurance last year to start Clearcover.
Clearcover doesn’t want to bombard you with ads and catchy jingles. In fact, Nakatsuji said most people want to think less about their insurance provider, not more. So it’s working to get in front of users at “moments that matter,” like when you’re buying a car and comparing rates, then mostly operating in the background, Nakatsuji said.
“Big insurance companies fail to acknowledge how people feel about insurance, and that failure costs consumers billions,” he said. “Most people want to think about their insurance company less. They want the right coverage, when it matters, at the lowest cost possible.”
Using modern tech, Clearcover says it can offer customers the same level of coverage as traditional players and a much lower cost. It plans to begin offering car insurance in California, its first market, later this year.
People will be able to buy insurance via Clearcover’s website, and through third-party partners. Nakatsuji declined to say who those partners were at this point, but said many are tech companies and digital platforms that will offer Clearcover as an extra feature to their customers.
“Property and casualty companies spend more than $50 billion per year on marketing, agency infrastructure, and outdated processes. Clearcover’s new platform and distribution model eliminate those costs so people get more for their money,” Victor Pascucci III, Managing Partner of Lightbank, said in a statement. “After 20 years of working with insurance companies and investing in tech startups, Clearcover is one of the most exciting opportunities I’ve seen.”
Clearcover plans to expand to additional states once it goes live in California.