Metromile Taps Uber Veteran Ryan Graves For $50M, Guidance On Innovation

Metromile, an insurance-focused fintech powered by data science and machine learning, on Monday formally announced the addition of a $50 million investment from Ryan Graves, a former Uber executive that will join the company's board also.

What Happened: Metromile caters to non-traditional car owners, such as those that use transportation services like Uber Technologies Inc. UBER and Lyft Inc. LYFT.

The company’s pay-per-mile auto insurance leverages big data and intelligent systems to tailor rates to driver behavior, resulting in lower premiums. Additionally, the company licenses out its core fraud, underwriting, and AI technology to help insurers automate and digitize their processes.

After partnering with INSU Acquisition Corp. II INAQ, a SPAC sponsored by the insurance-focused Cohen & Company Inc. COHN, to become a publicly listed company that would trade on the Nasdaq Inc. NDAQ exchange under ticker “MILE,” the company added a $50 million investment from Ryan Graves, Uber’s former senior vice president of global operations, as well as the founder and CEO of Saltwater, an investment company.

As part of the development, Graves will join Metromile’s board of directors, assisting Chamath Palihapitiya’s Social Capital, Mark Cuban, and other leading institutional investors to support Metromile’s growth plans as a public company.

“Ryan has a remarkable reputation as an energetic and thoughtful business builder. His leadership and operating skills made Uber one of the fastest-growing companies of all time. As Metromile accelerates growth and scale, Ryan’s partnership will be immensely valuable to our Board and management team,” said Metromile Founder and Chairman David Friedberg.

“We are thrilled to have him become an owner in the business and sit side-by-side our Board and management team as we execute our growth plans as a public company.”

Why It Matters: The development comes at a time when consumers are looking for cheaper ways to save on auto insurance, and incumbent providers look to streamline.

Those are some of the reasons Graves wanted to invest in the company; “We learned in 2020 that the world is unpredictable, and auto insurance is necessary to manage the risk that can take away opportunities, but it’s also an overhanging cost for many people. I saw this when we started Uber. In the old taxi model, a driver starts the week or month in the hole, and they’re working a certain number of hours just to break-even. They might only be making money for their work for 30% or 40% of their time driving.”

“Insurance is similar: Without pay-per-mile auto insurance, a driver might pay hundreds of dollars per month with flat-rate insurance before they even use their car. This is why I see Metromile as a tool to unlock financial freedoms for so many people.”

As innovation gains traction in transportation, unique solutions like Metromile, which understands that no two miles are driven the same and technology is paramount to progress, will disrupt roadways and impact pocketbooks.

Posted In: Chamath PalihapitiyaCohen & CompanyLyft IncMark CubanMetromileNASDAQRyan GravesSaltwaterSocial CapitalSPACSPACsFintechNewsFinancingSmall Cap

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