MassMutual Ventures, a $100 million fund established in 2015, is actively investing in and partnering with genetic, data analytics, cyber security, digital health and enterprise software startups that can be applied to the insurance industry.
Rather than focusing purely on new distribution plays or InsurTech startups, MassMutual ventures is casting a wider net with DNA profiling and data mining startups also being sought out.
Additionally, those working on life insurance, wealth management and retirement solutions are also being targeted by MassMutual Ventures. The current portfolio is comprised of 13 companies spanning multiple verticals including:
MassMutual Ventures has already committed $45 million of its $100 million fund to startups including Picwell, Limelight Health, and PolicyGenius. Picwell is particularly noteworthy for its use of advanced economic models and data science as it predicts your future health care usage and determines the best plans to meet your needs.
Ultimately, MassMutual is combining its brand recognition in the US with its capital base to invest in next generation startups. Although this is not a unique approach to fostering innovation, MassMutual is targeting some non-standard verticals such as genetic profiling in addition to partnering with a third party VC. If successful, this approach to external investment could become a template for other legacy insurers that don’t have deep venture investing experience.