Startup Trov, Munich Re to Insure Riders of Waymo’s Self-Driving Car Service

By | December 20, 2017

Trov, an on-demand insurance startup, plans to provide trip insurance for passengers using Waymo’s soon-to-be launched self-driving, ride-hailing service.

Waymo, formerly Google’s self-driving car project, plans to launch the commercial ride-hailing service for members of the public starting in Phoenix in 2018. (Google’s corporate parent is Alphabet Inc.)

This is the California-based Trov’s first foray into what it calls “the mobility space,” and it says that more coverage products will follow with a focus on serving “both today’s and tomorrow’s modes of transport.”

Trov initially launched with a focus on helping individuals insure their possessions such as cameras and sports equipment via its platform, which lets users turn the coverage on and off with a swipe of a finger on a smartphone.

Trov plans to offer trip insurance customized for passengers of the service. The coverage will be underwritten by a non-admitted affiliate of Munich Re, the venture capital arm of which has been a big investor in Trov. The policies will cover lost property, trip interruption and medical expense reimbursement resulting from rides, according to the app developer.

Trov founder and CEO Scott Walchek said the partnership reflects the convergence of the futures of both transportation and insurance.

“Waymo is making personal transportation more effortless, and so it follows that all aspects of a journey – including insurance – should be equally painless, with passengers’ safety and peace of mind paramount,” Walchek said in prepared remarks. “We are genuinely excited to be partnering with Waymo in developing innovations for insuring people and property in the evolution of personal mobility.”

Trov, founded in 2012, has raised more than $97 million in venture financing to date, including a $56 million Series D round disclosed in April 2017. Munich Re/HSB Ventures led the Series D financing.

Trov launched in Australia in May 2016, where it is underwritten by Suncorp, and in the UK in December 2016, where AXA is its underwriting partner.

Trov had planned to launch in the U.S. during 2017 but those plans were delayed while it obtained approval from state regulators. It has now been approved by 31 states including California.

Source: Trov