Insurtech: Austin’s The Zebra, an Insurance Comparison Tool Provider, Secures $150M via Series D, Achieves Unicorn Status

Austin-based The Zebra, a company that provides an insurance comparison solution, has secured $150 million in capital through its Series D round. The Zebra has reportedly achieved Unicorn status (valued at $1 billion or more) following its latest round.

The Zebra’s latest investment round size and new valuation are a considerable increasse from the $38.5 million Series C that the company raised in February of last year. The Zebra’s management had not revealed or confirmed its valuation after their February 2020 round, but the company is now valued at more than $1 billion.

The Zebra has not shared the name of the company that led its Series D funding round. However, sources familiar with the matter, cited by TechCrunch, stated that the deal was led by London’s Hedosophia. Existing investors Accell and Weatherford Capital also took part in the recent round.

The Zebra’s latest round is also considerably larger than its previous funding rounds combined. The firm has secured a total of $261.5 million (to date) since it began offering services back in 2012. Previous The Zebra investors include Ballast Point Ventures, Daher Capital, Floodgate Fund, Silverton Partners, KDT, and The Zebra CEO Keith Melnick.

Melnick confirmed that the latest investment round was all primary, and did not include any debt or secondary.

The Zebra began operations as a website or portal for consumers shopping around for car insurance through its real-time quote comparison software tools. The firm reportedly works with leading auto insurance carriers, based in the US.

Over the years, The Zebra has also started providing homeowners insurance with the intention of diversifying products by providing renters and life insurance as well. The Zebra has introduced a dedicated home and auto bundled product.

The Zebra has also taken advantage of the consumer shift to all-digital platforms and services, a trend that has accelerated following the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Zebra has also managed to double it total revenue last year to around $79 million, which is considerably more than the $37 million reported by the company back in 2019, Melnick confirmed.

Last month marked the firm’s best-performing month ever, Melnick revealed, while noting that revenue reached $12.5 million — putting the firm on track to record an annual turnover of about $150 million for 2021.

The Zebra’s revenue per applicant has surged 100% year over year, Melnick noted. And The Zebra now has 325 professionals on its payroll, which is significantly more than around 200 workers the company had reported in early 2020.

Melnick added:

“We’ve definitely improved our relationships with carriers and seen more carrier participation as they continue to embrace our model. And we’ve leaned more into brand marketing efforts.”

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