Sony unit backs British insurance start-up Urban Jungle


A unit of Sony, the giant Japanese conglomerate, is investing millions of pounds in a British insurance start-up which has amassed more than 200,000 customers.

Sky News understands that Urban Jungle will announce this week that it has raised $14.4m (£11.2m) from existing investors including Sony Innovation Fund.

The funding will take the total sum it has raised since launch to just over £43m.

Urban Jungle, which was founded in 2017 by Jimmy Williams and Greg Smyth, offers home insurance to customers and intends to use its new capital to expand into new areas.

It positions itself as a “fair” provider of insurance cover, with its pricing key to its offering at a time when cost-of-living challenges continue to beset British households.

“Our technology means we can screen out fraudsters and help genuine customers get a much better deal, which is particularly important in the current economy,” Mr Williams said.

The company’s backers include Rob Devey, the former Prudential chief executive, and Simon Rogerson, the boss of Octopus Ventures.

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It employs 70 people in the UK.

Antonio Avitabile, a managing director of the Sony vehicle which participated in the round, said the company was committed “to redefining the insurance landscape by making insurance accessible and affordable to a wider population aligns with our vision for forward-thinking investments that benefit society”.

The valuation at which the new funding was raised was unclear on Monday.

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