Start-up virtual intermediary RapidInsure achieved a major coup this week after winning £1m worth of equity backing from terrestrial TV network, Channel 5.

Under the terms of the deal, Channel 5 will receive an 8% stake in the insurance provider, launched on March 1.

For this the TV company will offer RapidInsure one-year's sponsorship of the weather and a series of advertisements to

coincide with relevant programmes. The RapidInsure website will also be linked exclusively to Channel 5's website that gets an average of five and a half million hits per page impressions.

RapidInsure currently offers cover on travel, office and home, term life, personal accident, office and home IT equipment and pet travel. It expects to have 70 products available by the end of the year.

RapidInsure was launched two weeks ago by e-millionaire Darryl Mattocks, founder of Internet Bookshop and

Its managing director is Richard Dunbabin, who was previously at the helm of Oxfordshire brokerage MCM.

Dunbabin said: "Our launch was extremely successful and we have had a steady rise in the number of visitors to the site day by day. We are ready for the large increase in users and customers expected with our national advertising campaign."