Listen Here

| |

Conversation
Highlights

 

Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Sergey Litvinenko, CEO & Co-Founder at Koop Insurance, an insurance technology company that has raised $7 Million in funding.

Here are the most interesting points from our conversation:

  • Preventive Insurance Model: Koop Insurance distinguishes itself by offering a preventive insurance model tailored for the tech sector, where traditional insurance falls short due to a lack of historical data for new technologies.
  • Founding Inspiration: The initial idea for Koop emerged from the challenges faced in the autonomous vehicle space, which led to the realization that these challenges were prevalent across the tech sector, prompting a pivot to insurance.
  • Aha Moments: Sergey describes multiple “aha” moments in Koop’s journey, such as shifting from an API for autonomous vehicles to an insurance model when realizing the existing market’s inefficiencies.
  • Growth and Scaling: Discussing the growth from a bootstrap startup in Pittsburgh to a pre-series A stage company in New York with nearly 20 full-time employees.
  • Trust and Branding: Emphasizing the importance of trust in the insure-tech space, Koop focuses on building a brand that combines expertise, reliability, and partnership with giants like Munich Re and Lloyd’s of London.
  • Market Strategy and Evolution: Koop’s strategy involves not selling insurance in the conventional sense but offering compliance and risk management as part of a comprehensive package to tech companies.

 

Actionable
Takeaways

Leverage Industry Pain Points:

Sergey identified a significant gap in traditional insurance models that couldn't accommodate the rapid innovation in tech, particularly in areas lacking historical data. Founders can look for similar gaps in their industries where existing solutions fail to meet emerging needs, offering a unique value proposition.

Iterative Product Development:

Koop’s shift from an API for autonomous vehicles to an insurance provider highlights the importance of flexibility and responsiveness to market feedback. Startups should remain open to pivoting their product or service based on real-world interactions and emerging insights from their target market.

Build on Trust and Expertise:

As a new player in a traditional industry, establishing trust is crucial. Sergey’s strategy involved aligning Koop with reputable partners and emphasizing their specialization and expertise in the tech insurance space. Similarly, startups should consider how partnerships and branding can enhance their perceived reliability and authority.

Innovate on Go-to-Market Strategies:

Koop’s approach of "selling insurance by not selling insurance" and focusing on compliance and risk management as a package highlights how rethinking your product’s delivery can differentiate you in a crowded market. Founders should explore innovative GTM strategies that align closely with the customer's end goals rather than just pushing a product.

Multi-Channel Distribution from the Start:

Diversifying acquisition channels early on, as Koop did, can mitigate risks and maximize market reach. This approach ensures that startups aren’t overly reliant on a single channel, which could shift in effectiveness as market dynamics change.

Recommended Founder
Interviews

Harleen Singh

Director of Marketing of Flow

Harleen Singh, Director of Marketing at Flow: The Importance of Deep Customer Understanding in B2B Marketing

Liz Deranja

CMO of

Liz Deranja, Fractional CMO for Insuretech Companies: Leveraging Email Marketing for Engagement and Growth

Vincenz Klemm

CEO & Co-Founder of Baobab

Vincenz Klemm, CEO of Baobab: $4 Million to Build the Future of Cyber Insurance

Martin J. Gylfe

CEO and Co-Founder of Insurely

Martin Gylfe, CEO and Co-Founder of Insurely: €22 Million Raised to Power the Future of Open Insurance

Douglas Ver Mulm

CEO of Stable

Douglas Ver Mulm, CEO at Stable: $3.7 Million in Funding to Insure Rideshare Drivers

Paul Monasterio

CEO and Co-Founder of Kalepa

Paul Monasterio, CEO and Co-Founder of Kalepa: $16 Million Raised to Power the Future of Insurance Underwriting

Jeff Radke

CEO of Accelerant

Jeff Radke, CEO of Accelerant: Over $500 Million Raised to Empower Underwriters to Deliver Better Insurance

Dirk Doebler

Founder and CEO of Parento

Dirk Doebler, Founder and CEO of Parento: $4.5 Million Raised to Build the Future of Paid Parental Leave

David Wald

President and Co-Founder of Aclaimant

David Wald, President and Co-Founder of Aclaimant: $30 Million Raised to Build the Future of Active Risk Management

Mark Morissette

CEO and Co-Founder of Foxquilt

Mark Morissette, CEO and Co-Founder of Foxquilt: $25 Million Raised to Build the Future of SMB Commercial Insurance

Max Bruner

CEO and Founder of Anzen Insurance

Max Bruner, CEO and Founder of Anzen Insurance: $10 Million Raised to Build the Future of Executive Risk Insurance

Michael Konialian

Co-Founder and CEO of Modern Life

Michael Konialian, Co-Founder and CEO of Modern Life: $15 Million Raised to Build the Tech-Enabled Insurance Brokerage of the Future