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Sumitomo Mitsui invests $350 mn in US insurtech Hippo

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The Japanese insurer will purchase convertible bonds from Hippo, which is valued at $1.5 bn

Japan-based insurer Sumitomo Mitsui Insurance has invested around $350 million in US-based insurtech startup Hippo, media reports said. According to the deal, Sumitomo Mitsui, which is a subsidiary of Japan’s MS&AD Insurance Group and the fifth largest non-life insurance group in the world, will purchase convertible bonds from Hippo, which is valued at around $1.5 billion.

Sumitomo Mitsui also wants to harness Hippo’s technological capabilities when it comes to artificial intelligence (AI) and its role in minimising damage from fires and other risks.

Hippo, which is based in Palo Alto, said that the funding will help the company expand its operations to other US states. Hippo is aiming to reach 95 percent of the US homeowners population in the next year.

Chief executive at Hippo, Assaf Wand told the Business Journal in July, “If there is something you need for your home, you are going to call us. If you are locked out of your house and you need a locksmith, we are going to help you with that. If you have a DIY project you need help with, you will call us. If you have a checkup you need on the house, call us. Or if you have a problem with your computers, eventually you can call us.”

With regard to the investment from Sumitomo Mitsui, Assaf Wand said that it is one of the best when it comes to risk management and shares similar desires as Hippo’s to leverage data and analytics to create better outcomes for homeowners.

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