Jay Z and Will Smith backed life insurance start-up valued at almost $500 million

Life insurance start-up - Robert Downey Jr. visits the Embassy

The company, called Ethos, gained considerable value in a Series C round led by big-name backers. San Francisco-based life insurance start-up, Ethos, has just gained an additional $60 million in funding and is now valued at just about $500 million. Existing investors include such big name celebs as Jay Z, Will Smith and Robert Downey Jr. During its Series C round of funding, the life insurance start-up was highly successful, with a round led by Alphabet’s (parent company of Google) venture arm, GV, as well as Goldman Sachs. Its existing…

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What you need to know about Berkshire insurance investing struggles

Berkshire Insurance - Analysis - Woman with glasses

Warren Buffett is known for outstanding outcomes in this industry but current figures are sour. In the investing world, Berkshire insurance decisions have often been seen as the gold standard in terms of solid and reliable choices. However, the company’s operating earnings fell in Q2 2019, shocking many investors. Insurers owned by Berkshire saw a substantial plummet in underwriting income in that quarter. Berkshire insurance underwriting income fell by almost 63 percent during the second quarter. This brought it to $353 million. The firm’s reinsurance unit also drooped to a…

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Traditional long term care insurance policy sales maintain downward slope

Traditional long term care insurance - Hand over senior citizens

Data shows that Americans are buying fewer LTC policies year over year. Americans are no longer purchasing traditional long term care insurance at the same rate they used to. In 2018, they bought only about 60,000 stand-alone policies in that category. That represents a drop of 13 percent year over year. Falling sales mean fewer insurance companies are participating in this coverage sector. Only about 15 carriers actively sold traditional long term care insurance policies last year. Moreover, among them, five took in over three quarters of the entire market,…

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MetLife to shake up life insurance industry with Ethereum blockchain adoption

Life insurance industry - Ethereum Blockchain

The insurer is using the live tech to enhance efficiency and transparency throughout the claims process. MetLife is adopting the use of Ethereum blockchain in a move that will disrupt the $2.7 trillion life insurance industry. Among the goals is to help beneficiaries to know they are entitled to a payout when their family member or friend has died. At the moment, the industry is essentially opaque to both policyholders and beneficiaries. This situation is advantageous to neither the life insurance industry nor its customers. MetLife is hoping to change…

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Grumpy Cat’s owner faces income loss risk without social media insurance

Social media insurance loss - Image of Grumpy Cat

In the absence of coverage for animal influencers, owners risk financial losses when their pets die. Following the death of Grumpy Cat, the lack of a niche social media insurance product for animal influencers has fallen into the spotlight. As a result, the popular meme cat’s owner is at risk of some major financial losses. Under the law, a pet – even a social media influencer – is comparable to any other possession. Grumpy Cat left a fun and beloved legacy behind, along with a business that had been highly…

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Philip Morris launches Reviti life insurance company with discounts for smokers who quit

Reviti Life Insurance - Smoking - cigaretes, Ash tray

The tobacco giant has started its own insurer with special discounts for smokers working on cessation. Philip Morris International, the tobacco giant behind Marlboro cigarettes, has just opened its own insurer called Reviti life insurance. Reviti is a wholly owned subsidiary of Philip Morris that will begin selling life insurance in the UK. Though Reviti life insurance will start in the United Kingdom, the intention is to expand its sales into markets overseas as well. That said, what is interesting about this life insurance company owned by the tobacco giant…

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Japan’s insurance industry takes steps to stop genetic discrimination

Genetic discrimination - DNA

The Japanese industry is preparing guidelines to make sure insurers can’t collect customer DNA. The insurance industry in Japan is getting ready to create guidelines that would stop genetic discrimination by insurers in the country. They are seeking to ban health and life insurance companies from the collection or use of genetic information for purposes related to coverage eligibility or premiums calculations. Associations across the industry say they haven’t started using genetic info but the goal is to stop it. According to the Life Insurance Association of Japan, its members…

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