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Chamath Palihapitiya helps British insurance coverage start-up Flock

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Venture Capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya.

Mark Kauzlarich / Bloomberg via Getty Images

LONDON – On June 3rd, one of the hottest days of the year to date in London, Chamath Palihapitiya, an early Facebook executive turned tech investor, dined on the rooftop of the insurance start-up Flock: Ed with co-founders Hotels The Ned for lunch Kingler and Anton Pena.

The young entrepreneurs seem to have kept a cool head that day as Palihapitiya is now investing $ 10.6 million in the company’s Series A round through its venture capital firm Social Capital. Other investors are investing around $ 6 million on an undisclosed valuation.

Flock was founded in 2015 and initially offered insurance for commercial drone operators such as Netflix, the BBC and a medical delivery service from the UK’s National Health Service. The company’s “real-time risk engine” allows customers to be charged per flight instead of asking them to take out an annual policy like many traditional insurers. In July 2020, it started offering the same product to companies in the automotive sector.

“This is the fastest growing industry,” Flock CEO Kingler told CNBC, adding that his start-up is targeting the “clunky and slow” $ 160 billion commercial auto insurance market , which is dominated by traditional insurance, wants to disrupt companies like Aviva and Direct Line.

“We have developed a technology that insurance companies can essentially calculate per second per meter,” he said. “Every single trip is calculated independently.”

Flock’s “usage-based” products are designed to use the driving data from telematics devices in cars, vans and trucks to determine how much to charge the customer.

It aims to attract customers with thousands of couriers like Amazon, as well as ride hailing companies like Uber. Self-drive rental companies like Virtuo and The Out from Jaguar Land Rover have already signed up as customers.

Social Capital has already supported a number of automotive and drone startups.

“We are building a core piece of the financial infrastructure that enables these companies to thrive and help them reduce risk and ultimately save lives,” said Kingler.

In a statement, Palihapitiya said, “Flock bridges the gap between today’s insurance industry and tomorrow’s transportation realities.”

He added, “By using real-time data to really understand vehicle risk, Flock is meeting the needs of our rapidly evolving, hyperconnected world. Flock has the potential to open up and enable a truly autonomous world and even save lives. We look forward to being part of your journey. “

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