The travel insurance start-up Faye has raised $8 million in seed funding, led by Viola Ventures and F2 Venture Capital, with participation from Portage Ventures, Global Founders Capital and former National Basketball Association player Omri Casspi. The news comes on the heels of the company exiting stealth mode last month to introduce a more tech-driven person-first travel coverage and care offering to American consumers.
Faye’s proprietary product is an app that covers travelers’ trips, health, belongings and even pets via real-time alerts, provides 24/7 access to customer experience specialists, enables users to file claims digitally, and quickly pays for approved claims via electronic transfers.
“Travel insurance has become synonymous with lengthy, jargon-filled policies that leave travelers confused rather than well-informed,” said Faye’s cofounder and CEO Elad Schaffer. “The claims process can be slow and bureaucratic and may require a lot of time and excessive paperwork. Faye is hitting the market as a solution to these pain points, at a time in which consumers are planning to travel more than ever before and are seeking solutions to look after them while on the road.”
Faye was founded by serial entrepreneurs Schaffer and cofounder and CTO Daniel Green. It comprises several seasoned travel and insurance executives, including director of claims Jeff Rolander, who spent nearly two decades at an American legacy travel insurance provider; VP of growth Moran Treiser, who co-founded the growth marketing operation at Lemonade; director of communications Lauren Gumport, who built and executed travel-tech company Guesty’s global communications strategy; and director of customer experience Gal Magid, a veteran PassportCard alum.
The company plans to use the money generated from its seed round to recruit talent and strengthen its technology with additional trip support and claim automation capabilities. Faye also plans to onboard new distribution partners, including travel advisers and travel agencies.
A notable investor in Faye is Omri Casspi, a former NBA player who recently launched his own VC firm, Sheva, alongside veteran early-stage VC investor David Citron.
“The travel insurance landscape has been in dire need of innovation for quite some time,” said Casspi. “I know the all-star team at Faye will be able to bridge the gaps with their winning product.”
The need for innovation in the insurance industry has not gone unnoticed. Insurance technology in Israel has picked up steam over the last few years as innovators have inspected the insurance industry and determined its pain points.
“It’s an industry that’s highly regulated, so things tend to move a bit slower than in other industries,” said Neta Rozi, CTO and co-founder at insure-tech company Parametrix.
“What happened is that technology developed very quickly, and the insurance industry was a little slow to catch up,” she said. “For business insurance in general, a lot of the tech-related insurance problems weren’t covered. I think today there are a lot of insure-techs that are doing a really good job of trying to fill that gap, but there’s definitely still a lot more to be done.”