The insurtech will use its latest funding to fast-track growth in commercial motor 

Zego has raised $150m, making it the UK’s “first insurtech unicorn” - the firm is now valued at $1.1bn.

This is claimed to be the largest funding raise by a UK-founded insurtech. It was led by DST Global and includes other new backers such as General Catalyst, whose founder and managing director Joel Cutler will join the Zego board.

Zego will use this latest investment to accelerate its growth in the commercial motor sector, beginning with an expansion into new markets and further penetration across Europe.

It will continue investing in technology following its recent acquisition of telematics company Drivit and double down on its fleet offering. This is in reaction to changes in consumer behaviour, such as an increased demand for new mobility services.

Zego will also continue to invest in its team, especially across product, engineering and data science, as it aims to double staff headcount by the end of 2021.

Sten Saar, Zego’s chief executive and co-founder, said: “This latest round of funding is a huge milestone for Zego. It is a testament to our relentlessly hard-working team and a clear validation of the need for Zego’s products in the market.

“That being said, however, we see this investment as simply another step in our journey towards powering opportunities for businesses across the world.

”In the five years since we started Zego, we’ve covered hundreds of thousands of businesses across Europe.”

Deep believer

Zego is an insurtech that specialises in commercial motor insurance. Its insurance offering covers self-employed drivers and riders to entire fleets of vehicles. It has provided more than 17 million insurance policies and covered more than 200,000 vehicles across five countries. It has also been involved in insuring e-scooters for the government UK trials.

Saar continued: “It is clear that the way people use vehicles is undoubtedly changing and what’s become ever more apparent is that the traditional, rigid model of insurance is no longer fit for purpose.

”We founded Zego to offer a more effective solution for customers and with the support of our amazing backers and the work of our team, we are in the best possible position to expand this offering on a global scale.”

Cutler added: “We are a deep believer in this new generation of insurance companies and Zego is one of the most exciting and dynamic startups we’ve seen. They have identified the change from ownership to usership of vehicles as a massive opportunity in the insurance market and I am thrilled to be both joining its board and supporting their team in the journey from European insurtech heavyweight to global insurance company.”

Tom Stafford, managing partner at DST Global, said: “We have been following Zego since inception and continue to be impressed by the development of the team, product and customer proposition.

“The shift to digital is occurring across multiple industry categories and is increasingly occurring in the insurance industry. We are excited to partner with Saar and the team at Zego as they leverage internet, technology, telematics and data-driven decisions to provide the best insurance products at the best pricing for their customers.”

All of Zego’s existing investors are also included in its latest funding round; this includes TransferWise’s founder Taavet Hinrikus, who is also on Zego’s board, as well as Target Global, Balderton Capital and Latitude.