Insurer USAA is buying Noblr, an insurtech digital insurer offering behavior-based auto insurance.
USAA, a Texas-based insurer focused on members of the U.S. military and their families, said the acquisition will help make it more competitive by modernizing its offerings. The company also cited its financial strength as allowing it to accelerate innovation in this space through acquisitions.
Noblr’s app offers personalized car insurance that good driving behaviors with continuous, real-time rates. Noblr, which operates as a reciprocal exchange, currently sells in 15 states.
USAA declined to disclose its purchase price, though the deal is expected to close later in 2021, following regulatory approvals.
USAA plans to integrate Noblr’s product line into its operations. The company said Noblr’s 50 employees will be kept on and continue working with Noblr customers while USAA moves to offer those same products to its own members. Noblr is headquartered in San Francisco and has an office in Austin, Texas.
USAA said it will offer the usage-based insurance at a state level over the next three years, beginning in 2021, starting with the eight states where Noblr is currently available and expanding to additional states through the year.
“Members will get personalized pricing that fits their risk and usage profile, better control over the cost of their auto policies and an exceptional end-to-end digital experience,” said Wayne Peacock, USAA president and chief executive officer.
Noblr, which launched in 2017, has not publicized its total venture financing. The insurer’s backers include Hudson Structured Capital Management, White Mountains Insurance Group and SiriusPoint Ld. Third Point Re is also a backer, according to the company’s web site.
Whether the Noblr name continues is an open question. A USAA spokesperson told Carrier Management by email that “USAA will evaluate branding opportunities after the transaction is completed.”
USAA, meanwhile, will continue its own SafePilot, behavior-based insurance program. The Noblr program will be separate from SafePilot, though the company noted that both encourage safer driving in return for savings. Both programs will be optional for members.
Usage-based insurance products promise lower premiums based on miles driven and behavior behind the wheel. USAA said this is an offering it has wanted for its active military members “who are highly mobile and frequently deployed.”
Other insurers have expanded usage-based programs over the years and subsequently released related apps, including Travelers, Liberty Mutual, Nationwide, Plymouth Rock, Progressive and State Farm. Digital insurer Root is also active in the space.
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