Curacel, a Nigerian startup that builds infrastructure for insurance products across Africa, has raised a $3 million seed round to roll out new technology offerings and expand into North Africa. The startup currently offers cloud-based tools and APIs to its customers and claims to work with 20 insurance companies and more than 5,000 service providers in eight African markets. 

The seed funding round saw participation from Tencent, AAF Management, Elefund, Blue Pointe Capital Management, Pioneer Fund, Olive Tree Capital, and Y Combinator, as well as James Park, Olugbenga “GB” Agboola, Babs Ogundeyi, and other strategic investors. Executives from Covergenius, Zopper, and Pie Insurance will also join Curacel’s advisory board as part of the round.

Although Africa is the second fastest-growing region for insurance in the world, the penetration rate for insurance hovers around 3%. The low demand for insurance across the continent can be tied to a lack of customer awareness and trust in traditional insurance companies. 

It is against this backdrop that John Dada and Henry Mascot founded Curacel in 2019, to help traditional companies distribute their products, automate their claims processes, and drive revenue growth by giving them easy-to-use technology solutions that have been specifically designed to drive up insurance inclusion on the continent. Insurers like AXA Mansard, Liberty Health, Old Mutual and Jubilee Heath now leverage Curacel’s technology to reduce their claims cycles and process more claims. 

The startup also helps non-insurance companies to increase their recurring revenue by offering digital insurance products that are seamlessly embedded into their existing products and services, driving much-needed insurance penetration and customer loyalty. Companies like ALAT, Vendease, Float, Pocket, PalmPay and Providus have also used Curacel’s technology to offer digital insurance products that are seamlessly embedded into their existing products and services.

Four years after inception, the startup claims to have processed more than $100 million worth of claims, working with more than 20 insurers and 5,000 service providers in 8 countries across the continent. In 2022, Curacel grew its transaction volume by 600% and increased its revenue by 500%.

“Africa remains a relatively untapped market when it comes to insurance and technology presents the best opportunity to reach new users and deliver excellent services,” said Serik Kaldykulov, General Partner at Elefund. 

“Curacel has built a suite of solutions and an impressive track record of success that makes us very excited to be supporting them on their mission to use technology to drive up insurance inclusion in Africa.” 

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