Tweet fuels new start-up that plans to disrupt insurance sector

Life & Provide has been founded by the team that set up Irish fintech Deposify

Jon Bayle and Dave Brennan, co-founders of Deposify and Life & Provide.

Jon Bayle and Dave Brennan, co-founders of Deposify and Life & Provide.

 

Plenty of people take to social media to complain about service but not many of us make good on their threats to do something about it. Entrepreneur Jon Bayle is different though.

Having gone on Twitter late last year to give out about how frustrating it was trying to obtain life insurance, he duly went out the next day and set up a new business to address the problem.

“Life insurance is f***ed up, especially as you get older (like me). And a nightmare if you’ve anything other than a vanilla medical history. I think I’m going to build something to try fix that,” Mr Bayle said in a tweet posted in in November.

Six months later Life & Provide, which has already secured seed financing from financial services veterans, is live.

It is starting small with two products: pet insurance and renters’ insurance. The latter in particular is something the company’s co-founders are well acquainted with given they are also the brains behind Deposify, a start-up that provides escrow services to landlords, tenants and letting agents.

“We want to become a UX [user experience] leader in insurance. Our goal is to provide a fast and convenient customer experience for something that has traditionally been a terrible buying experience, paper heavy, lots of delay and not much transparency,” said co-founder and chief technology officer Dave Brennan.

Success

Mr Bayle and Mr Brennan have already achieved considerable success with Deposify, a US-focused company that has an “escrow as a service” platform that allows landlords and tenants to manage and control how and when rental deposits are paid and resolve deposit-related disputes quickly. They are using what they’ve learned with that business to improve the insurance-buying process.

Insurance is a space the entrepreneurs know well from their experience working and competing with insurers in the United States.

“We’ve learned that distribution is everything in start-up. We’re taking what we learned in Deposify – where we sell through US partners with national reach to property managers, who in turn drive tenant adoption – to insurance. We want to go where the buyers of insurance are buying their products and services online today, embedding our technology in the checkout flow.” he said.

Mr Bayle said the company’s investors all come from insurance and financial services backgrounds.

“We’ve built a team of experienced insurance industry advisers around us to help and we’re taking a capital-light, ownership-first approach in Life & Provide, as we have done in Deposify,” he said.

“We have two distribution partnerships already with market leaders in real estate and pet who have significant user bases. We’d love to talk to other online businesses looking to offer insurance products to their customers,” Mr Bayle added.