Etap’s CEO Ibraheem Babalola
Nigerian insurtech startup Etap has raised $1.5 million in a pre-seed funding round led by Mobility 54 – the venture capital wing of Toyota Tsusho and CFAO Group. Other participants involved in the funding round include Tangerine Insurance, Graph Ventures, and Newmont Ventures. The round also saw participation from angel investors.
Insurtech startups like Etap are helping to bridge the insurance gap present in Nigeria and a continent like Africa where people pay less attention to insurance. Etap, as well s other startups in its line of business, is helping to ensure that the process of accessing, buying insurance, and making claims are done in a simple and relatable manner. Etap says on its platform, vehicle owners are able to buy an insurance product in 90 seconds and complete claims in about three minutes.
The idea for Etap came from personal challenges Etap’s CEO Ibraheem Babalola faced while trying to buy insurance. His plan was to make buying insurance as well as making claims as simplified as possible. “The idea itself is from being a frustrated customer; my insurance would expire and I wouldn’t get a notification to renew it…I always had to make a call to a guy who would help me renew it. I thought that there is a way to do it better.”
Following the funding, the startup plans to expand across the continent of Africa. According to the founder and CEO of the startup, Ibraheem Babalola, “We have great products and excellent value propositions. But we know that the products and value proposition can be greater and that’s why we sought out partners that we have right now. Our plan is to have the most preferred insurance products and to grow and scale this across Africa. I feel like we are perfectly positioned to achieve that.”
Founder and CEO Ibraheem Babalola who has experience with building and helping fintechs to scale their operations, as well as experience relating to insurance having worked as an executive in a top Nigerian insurance company, decided to launch Etap.
According to him, “Nigeria has one of the highest risk environments in the world and an insurance penetration of less than 2% — that relationship is crazy because the higher the risk the more the propensity to want to protect yourself against events; but in Nigeria and the rest of Africa, this is not the case. This needs to change.”
He went on to explain that “Having all these experiences from being on the two sides; being a customer and close to the operator, and experience in building startups; I thought it’s important to reimagine insurance — To reimagine the offering, how people access it, user experience — to make it more flexible, and transparency — by building trust and giving people more value.”
Today, Etap allows people easy access to insurance for their cars giving them the option of buying insurance on a daily, monthly, or yearly basis. There is also the option of buying insurance per trip made. This shows the flexibility of its products. On the platform, people can also redeem points for buying and using products on the basis of their history.
“Etap is addressing many challenges that impact the automotive experience in Africa, and we are excited to support and work with them to bring their innovation to more drivers across the continent. We believe that Etap will engage with this important role and revolutionize the automotive insurance industry with their powerful technology,” Mobility 54’s project manager, Yumi Takagi commented.