Travelers Selects Pineapple as Innovation Prize Winner for VentureClash

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Insurtech start-up receives $25,000 in grant funding from Travelers.

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Of the many promising, early-stage companies with which we get to engage as part of the VentureClash process, Pineapple certainly stood out as deserving of the Innovation Prize.

Connecticut Innovations (CI) today announced that Travelers, one of the largest property casualty insurers with major operations in Hartford, has awarded the $25,000 VentureClash Innovation Prize to Pineapple, a peer-to-peer insurance provider founded in Johannesburg. The VentureClash Innovation Prize is awarded to VentureClash competitors developing solutions and pursuing market opportunities in insurtech.

“We are once again proud to partner with Connecticut Innovations in supporting exciting, early-stage companies whose ideas are furthering the entire insurance industry,” said Michael Klein, Executive Vice President and President of Personal Insurance at Travelers. “In providing people with a simple way to protect their belongings with trust and transparency, Pineapple’s innovative mobile platform is simplifying the process of procuring insurance in a digital environment and doing so at significantly lower costs. We congratulate the founders and look to following their success.”

Pineapple allows individuals to insure their possessions simply by snapping a picture and uploading it to the mobile application. Customers pay premiums and receive full insurance but are also able to withdraw their unused premiums as cash every year. The company shows its customers how their insurance premiums are used, creating a level of trust that reduces fraud and lowers costs. Pineapple currently has over 100,000 customers, most of whom are between the ages of 23 and 35 and are active on social media.

“Of the many promising early-stage companies we met as part of the VentureClash process, Pineapple stood out as most deserving of Travelers' Innovation Prize,” said Matt McCooe, CEO of Connecticut Innovations. “Due to the commitments made by partners like Travelers, Pineapple will have the support and ability to continue to grow its business right here in Connecticut.”

VentureClash brings together early-stage digital health, insurance technology (insurtech), financial technology (fintech) and industry 4.0 companies from around the world to compete for the opportunity to receive investment from CI to help them grow and succeed in Connecticut. The Innovation Prize was announced at the VentureClash semifinalist pitch event at Infosys in Hartford on Wednesday, July 31, 2019.

The finals event, which will feature 10 companies, will be on Thursday, October 17, at the Yale West Campus in Orange, Conn. For more information and to register to attend the VentureClash finals, visit http://www.ventureclash.com.

About VentureClash
Managed by Connecticut Innovations, VentureClash is Connecticut’s global venture challenge focused on early-stage companies. The challenge identifies high-potential companies in digital health, fintech, insurtech and industry 4.0 that will receive investments from a $5 million investment award pool. Learn more at http://www.ventureclash.com.

About Connecticut Innovations Inc.
Connecticut Innovations (CI) is Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and is the leading source of financing and ongoing support for innovative, growing companies. CI provides venture capital and strategic guidance for early-stage technology companies, and connections to its well-established network of partners and professionals. For more information, visit http://www.ctinnovations.com.

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Lauren Carmody
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