Breeze banks $10m to boost its disability and critical illness insurance offering

InsurTech Breeze closed a $10m Series A funding round led by Link Ventures with participation from Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures, Silicon Valley Bank, M25, Fiat Ventures and Invest Nebraska.

It will use the funding to accelerate the growth of its disability and critical illness insurance, the company’s core products. In addition to increasing the growth of its insurance policies, the money will also go towards adding new products, carriers, and agents to its digital platform.

It is also planning to build out its software development, customer service, distribution, and marketing teams.

The investment is the largest first round of institutional capital ever invested in a Nebraska-based software startup, it said.

Founded in 2020 by Colin Nabity and Cody Leach, Breeze has built insurance technology that makes it easier to apply and underwrite supplemental insurance products like income protection and critical illness insurance. The company offers consumers a completely digital way to quote, apply, and bind policies that offer protection in the event of cancer, heart attacks, strokes, and other medical conditions that can lead to a loss of income and cause financial trauma.

Explaining the reasons why he set up Breeze, Nabity said, “We founded Breeze to close a glaring coverage gap — specifically, the 51mn working Americans without adequate income protection.”

He added that this involved making insurance “more accessible”, and that, in the past, disability income and critical illness insurance were “overpriced” and too difficult to obtain. “But we’re changing that,” Nabity said.

Over 25% of today’s 20 year-olds will become disabled before they retire, yet the US individual disability insurance market remains very small with only around $430m written in premium in 2020. By making disability insurance easier to buy and sell online, the InsurTech can capitalise on the stagnant market that has been limited by carriers and agents, it said.

Lisa Dolan, Managing Director at Link Ventures, said: “Breeze caught our attention given its tremendous web traffic growth. We were also very impressed by Colin and Cody’s deep carrier relationships and their customer-obsessed mentality. We are thrilled to be part of fueling Breeze to become the category leader in disability insurance.

“The market remains largely untapped, but Breeze can change that quickly with its technology and online platform,” she said.

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