Descartes Underwriting raises Series A to develop parametric products

French Managing General Agency Descartes Underwriting announced an $18.5 million Series A round backed by Serena, Cathay Innovation and BlackFin Capital Partners; bringing its total funding to date to $21 million.

Founded in 2018, the team of ~18 people is led by co-founder and CEO Tanguy Touffut (ex-AXA Global Parametrics). The company works with insurers and brokers to come up with bespoke Property & Casualty insurance solutions in areas such as property damage, business interruption following natural catastrophes or financial losses caused by wildfires, droughts, high or low temperatures, excess of precipitations, etc. Its primary sectors of operations are agriculture & aquaculture, mining but also considers areas such as construction, traditional and renewable energy, cement, banks protecting their loans and assets, entertainment industry, and retail distribution.

Where applicable, Descartes Underwriting will take advantage of new data sources and remote sensors as well as leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques. “For a limited number of insurance partners, we design innovative B2B2C solutions, including pricing engine, back-end and API, through a white-label.” Finally, when it comes to claims, most products developed by Descartes do not incur claims handling costs as claims payments are usually triggered within a few days after the occurrence of the insured event.

The news follows Descartes’ partnership with Generali Global Corporate & Commercial. “This important milestone will be mutually beneficial in boosting our growth, securing our capacity and enlarging our geographical reach, while complementing Generali’s services and products in the parametric insurance space. This alliance will ensure businesses and communities access to outstanding tech-driven solutions to become more resilient in the face of climate change.”

According to the company, the investment will support its ambition to grow and lead the global parametric insurance space as it plans to open hubs in the US and in Asia, and further expand its offering and technology capabilities.