Travel Insurance Startup Faye Raises $8M in Seed Funding, Poised for Travel’s Rebound
Whole-trip travel insurance startup Faye has announced it has raised $8M in seed funding, led by Viola Ventures and F2 Venture Capital, with participation from Portage Ventures, Global Founders Capital (GFC) and former NBA player Omri Casspi. The news comes on the heels of the company exiting stealth mode last month to introduce a more tech-driven, quick, person-first travel coverage and care offering to American consumers.
Faye sets a new standard in a space that has undergone little innovation. The company’s robust protection can cover travelers’ trips, health, belongings, and even their pets, all via an app that sends real-time proactive alerts, provides 24/7 access to customer experience specialists, enables users to file claims digitally, and quickly pays for approved claims via electronic transfers to Faye Wallet, it’s easy-to-use secure payments card that works like Apple Pay and Google Pay. Via Faye Wallet, travelers can also receive speedy reimbursements for travel inconveniences (such as delayed bags and flights) and instantly use funds to purchase what they need most rather than paying out of pocket.
Co-Founder & CEO, Elad Schaffer: “Travel insurance has become synonymous with lengthy, jargon-filled policies that leave travelers confused rather than well-informed. 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. We’re here to meet their rising expectations and transform travel insurance from a forgettable add-on to a must-have advantage that enhances the entire trip experience.”
Available on iOS and Android, Faye has seen an influx of customers since launch, with its Customer Experience Team reporting that the majority are keen to understand how the company offers COVID-19 coverage. For those that purchase Faye’s travel protection and become ill with COVID-19 pre-trip, there is coverage for their cancellation claims up to their plan’s limit, all subject to the terms of the plan. And if they contract COVID-19 in-trip, there’s coverage for emergency medical expenses and trip interruption/trip delay claims (such as quarantine accommodation, flight changes, prescription drugs and hospitalization). In addition, those taking an international trip are covered for up to $250K in emergency medical expenses if they experience illness or injury in-trip. This value exceeds the majority of coverage protection requirements being set by countries welcoming American tourists.
Omry Ben David, General Partner, Viola Ventures: “Faye is re-inventing the category of consumer travel insurance in the U.S. where data isn’t leveraged yet for bespoke, price-optimized coverage in an industry with very favorable growth characteristics and unit economics.”
The Faye team is comprised of seasoned travel and insurance executives including Jeff Rolander, Director of Claims, who comes to the startup following nearly two decades at Allianz; Moran Treiser, VP of Growth, who co-founded the growth marketing operation at Lemonade; and Lauren Gumport, Director of Communications, who built and executed travel tech Guesty’s global communications strategy.
Faye has also put together a board of advisors to aid the company in navigating an environment largely dominated by legacy players, including former CEO of Global Travel Insurance at Allianz, Mike Nelson, former VP of Sales at AIG Travel Guard, Rick Ensign, and former President of Generali Travel Assistance, Raija Itzchaki.
Mike Nelson, CEO at arrivia and former CEO, Global Travel Insurance at Allianz: “Many companies offer travel insurance, but none have introduced a fully digital experience that eliminates the paperwork and hassle. I’m confident that the Faye team – with their paperless solution and person-first mentality – will deliver a superior, mobile experience to travelers.”
As the second startup founded by serial entrepreneurs and travel enthusiasts Elad Schaffer and Daniel Green, Co-Founder & CTO, Faye promises to focus on building long-lasting relationships with travelers so they feel looked after, even before they leave home. In the coming months, the company plans to dedicate this capital injection to recruiting talent and strengthening its technology with additional proactive trip support and claim automation capabilities. Faye also plans to onboard new distribution partners, including travel advisors, travel agencies, OTAs and other like-minded brands who put the traveler first.