German insurance giant Allianz increases its VC fund to $1.1 billion
Allianz X, the venture capital arm attached to German insurance giant Allianz, has increased the size of its fund to €1 billion, around $1.1 billion, according to an announcement made today. The fund was initially €430 million, or around $490 million, when it launched in 2016.
This new injection comes directly from parent Allianz SE, the 124-year-old insurer that did €130 billion ($150 billion) in revenue last year, and it makes Allianz X one of the largest active startup investment vehicles in Europe. While it is anchored in Europe, the fund’s investment thesis and focus is very much a global one, with a focus on verticals including fintech, health, mobility, data and cybersecurity.
It has made 15 deals to date, with a focus on growth-stage investments in startups such as emerging market-focused microinsurance company BIMA, Southeast Asian ride-hailing unicorn Go-Jek, U.S.-based capital marketplace C2FO and European challenger bank N26.
Allianz X, which initially began as an in-house incubation venture, is now looking to go after more of the same with its enlarged kitty, but it also plans to get to work with its existing portfolio of companies.
“Since shifting our strategy, we have built a great portfolio in which many companies have already developed successful partnerships with Allianz’s business units. We are very excited about raising our investment budget to €1 billion and will use the funds entrusted to us to both strengthen our portfolio and build strong, global platforms that create new businesses for Allianz,” Dr. Nazim Cetin, CEO of Allianz X, said in a statement.
Beyond potentially supplying more capital to its existing investors — it isn’t clear whether Allianz X is a part of the new financing round that Go-Jek is raising, for example — the fund is keen to identify areas where its business units can add value both for the portfolio startups and the Allianz business itself. And, with a network of offices that spans more than 70 countries, there’s plenty of scope for collaboration.
In Indonesia, for example, Allianz has worked with Go-Jek to offer insurance to the ride-hailing company’s drivers that is payable at an affordable daily rate. That, both of them claim, has helped give many families health insurance for the first time whilst of course growing the Allianz Indonesia business by tapping into Go-Jek’s driver base, which, the company says, covers “millions” of Indonesians. That’s one part of Go-Jek’s fintech strategy, which includes relationships with some 28 financial institutions to provide access to financial services and other products.
Indeed, Allianz X said it has developed dedicated operational capabilities to replicate that type of collaboration across its portfolio.
“Our work with portfolio companies is focused on developing mutually beneficial strategic partnerships between the portfolio company and one or more Allianz operating entities and global business lines. Each investment has a dedicated team at Allianz X that assists the company with joint corporate development initiatives and implements them alongside the Allianz business unit,” a spokesperson told TechCrunch.