Malaysian property tycoon Leong Hoy Kum of Mah Sing Group among investors in PolicyStreet’s US$6mil Series A funding
By Digital News Asia September 29, 2021
- Round led by Altara Ventures with Auspac Ventures & Gobi Partners
- Plans to introduce new sachet-based and on-demand insurance products
Polisea Sdn Bhd, a Malaysian based Southeast Asia insurance technology startup founded in Jan 2017 that operates under the brand PolicyStreet.com, has completed its oversubscribed US$6 million (RM25 million) Series A fundraising over two tranches.
The latest round is led by Altara Ventures, Auspac Ventures, Gobi Partners and the Leong family of Mah Sing Group led by Leong Hoy Kum.
PolicyStreet raised an earlier round via PitchIN, KK Fund and Spiral Ventures during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in June 2020, the largest amount raised from an equity crowdfunding platform in Malaysia.
Yen Ming Lee, cofounder and CEO of PolicyStreet, said: “We are truly proud to have Altara, Auspac, Gobi and the Leong family’s belief in our vision. We are excited to introduce new sachet-based and on-demand insurance products with our new license to power up the digital ecosystem, while continuing to provide value to all our existing customers. With a very seasoned and experienced team of investor partners, PolicyStreet is convinced that our new investors will be able to help us grow to be the leading insurtech in the region.” The startup, with a headcount of around 35 one third of whom are software engineers in Kuala Lumpur, plans to enter two neighbouring markets within the next six to 12 months. It is presently operating in the Malaysian market.
Dave Ng, General Partner at Altara Ventures, said, “We believe in the potential of embedded digital insurance platforms to flip the existing model, and put customers in the centre. We have strong conviction in the PolicyStreet team to bring innovation and advancement in digital insurtech to our region."
Allen Cheong, CEO of Auspac Investment Management, adds “We are impressed with how the management team of PolicyStreet has scaled up its market presence in Malaysia within the last few years. With their drive, passion and grit, we are confident they will continue to propel PolicyStreet to greater heights. We look forward to supporting the company in its growth journey to become the leading insurtech in Southeast Asia.”
The funding announcement also coincided with PolicyStreet securing in-principle approval for a combined Reinsurance and General Insurance license from the Labuan Financial Services Authority, the financial regulator for Labuan International Business and Financial Centre. It is the second insurtech in Southeast Asia to be granted this insurance license which has also been granted to leading global insurance companies such as, Berkshire Hathaway, Hannover Re, Lloyd's Labuan, Swiss Re, Saudi Reinsurance, Allianz SE General Re and others.
The license will allow PolicyStreet to underwrite reinsurance and general risks as it looks to expand its strategic partnerships and footprint in the region.
Founded by former banking and insurance professionals Yen Ming Lee, Wilson Beh and Winnie Chua (pic), PolicyStreet has made purchasing insurance simple, easy and affordable.
In 2019, it was the only Malaysian insurtech that received the Financial Adviser and Islamic Financial Adviser approval from the Central Bank of Malaysia, enabling it to work with 40 insurance and takaful providers in sourcing, aggregating, customising and advising customers on the best insurance products that meets their needs.
The latest funding round follows a series of strategic partnerships PolicyStreet recently announced with:
• airasia money in providing digital car insurance to all airasia Super App customers,
• foodpanda in insuring all foodpanda’s delivery partners,
• myTukar, a pre-owned car buying and selling platform under the Carro Group, and
• Red Ideas Holdings, a technology company that develops neighbourhood community app JagaApp.
PolicyStreet aims to expand into new markets in the region, while doubling down on its technological capabilities and marketing efforts to address protection gaps and provide greater variety of insurance products to meet the growing demands of the digital economy.
Today, the insurtech serves not just end-users but also businesses in providing customised Employee Benefit, Building and Group Personal Accident insurance. Its business clientele includes small to large corporates and technology companies.
“PolicyStreet’s ability to quickly identify gaps in the insurance and protection market, as evidenced by its multiple strategic partnerships, has seen it capitalise on accelerating digital adoption. As more services enter the online space, the insurance and protection market will adapt and build new solutions in response. Gobi believes PolicyStreet is well-positioned to lead that charge,” comments Thomas G. Tsao, founding partner and Chair of Gobi Partners.