I am sure you must have come across a variety of insurance products during your lifetime, ranging from your two-wheeler insurance to health insurance to life insurance. But the question is, “Has insurance penetrated the lower income segment of India?” This question cannot be answered easily with a yes, given the fact that Insurers are selling the same insurance products to the affluent population as well as the lower income group. There is a lack of customization resulting in the lower and middle-income groups being unable to enjoy the benefits of insurance. The high distribution of this segment, operational costs and the lack of underwriting data has worsened this problem.
Bimaplan has come up with an affordable insurance platform for the next billion Indians. The company works with insurers to co-create over the counter, low-premium insurance products ($5-50 annually) relevant to the needs of low and middle-income populations. It is building a full-stack insurance platform from underwriting to distribution to customer engagement and retention.
Bimaplan’s vision is to provide financial security to 150 million vulnerable households through contextual life and health insurance products. Increasing mobile penetration and evolution of digital infrastructure in India has now made it possible to reach this underserved population. The startup’s strength lies in the fact that they understand their users’ perception of risk and create products mitigating that risk.
This Mumbai-based insurance platform was founded in November 2020 by Vipul Goyal. Vipul’s previous startup Carcrew was acquired by TVS Group in March 2020. As Vipul was preparing for his transition out of the company, the Covid-19 pandemic hit shook the country which went into a complete lockdown. This lockdown highlighted the deep-rooted social and financial inequality between the rich and the poor.
“More than 150 million Indian households do not have access to formal risk protection or social security. Unexpected events such as illness, accident, job loss, or death of an earning member can push a household into a poverty trap. At Bimaplan, we are creating contextual and affordable insurance plans in partnership with insurers and building a unique distribution using digital channels.”
– Vikul Goyal, Founder and CEO
The startup recently launched its insurance-in-a-box product, which allows its partners to sell embedded insurance products to their customers seamlessly. It has started pilots with 5 strategic partners which range from fintech startups to traditional financial services companies. It plans to launch more pilots in the forthcoming months, and to achieve $1 million ARR in the next 12 months.
Bimaplan has recently raised $2.5 million as part of its pre-Series A round, taking the total funding raised to $3 million. The round saw participation from global VC funds Amino Capital, Goodwater Capital, Acequia Capital, and EMVC, and angel investors. The funds would be utilized for building its team and developing its product. The company is a part of the current batch (W21) of Y Combinator. It is backed by some of the best global early-stage technology investors, successful fintech founders, and insurance industry veterans.
More than 150 million households in India do not have any formal means of risk protection and are not covered by the various Government schemes. India has over 700 million internet users currently, which is expected to reach 975 million by 2025. Bimaplan aspires to leverage this digital literacy by distributing its affordable insurance products to the underserved population through digital channels.