Israeli Startups Hippo, Gett Raise Combined $250m

U.S.-Israeli companies secure capital at $1.5 billion valuations

Assa Sasson
Sagi Cohen
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An Israeli Gett taxicab in Tel Aviv, March 6, 2020.
An Israeli Gett taxicab in Tel Aviv, March 6, 2020.Credit: Moti Milrod
Assa Sasson
Sagi Cohen

Two U.S.-based startups founded and led by Israelis announced major fundraisings on Tuesday. Hippo Enterprises, an online insurer based in Palo Alto, California, said it secured $150 million in new capital while Gett, a shared-mobility startup, took in $100 million.

Hippo, which was founded by CEO Assaf Wand and Eyal Navon, said the round valued its business at $1.5 billion post-financing. New investors Dragoneer and Ribbit Capital joined existing investors like Felicis Ventures and Iconiq Capital in the financing. It said the funding would be used to accelerate expansion, including reaching 95% of the U.S. homeowner population in the next 12 months.

Hippo began selling house insurance in 2017, initially in California and in 29 states. The latest financing round brings its total fundraising to date to $360 million.

Its fundraiser comes less than three weeks after Lemonade, another Israeli-founded digital insurer, went public in New York at a $2.6 billion valuation. Its share price has since soared and today it has a market capitalization of $4.6 billion.

Gett, which provides private car rides on-demand, said it raised its $100 million round at a $1.5 billion valuation, the same valuation as a round of fundraising in May 2019. The company did not disclose the names of its investors in the round, except to say they were new and existing backers.

It said it would use the funding to improve its “ground travel platform for corporates.” The startup has raised $900 million to date, including at least $380 million from Volkswagen.

Last year CEO and founder Dave Waiser had said Gett would have an IPO by the end of 2019. It didn’t happen, but Tuesday’s fundraiser appears to presage IPO plans.

The company has been hurt by the coronavirus pandemic, which has cut demand for rides by tens of percent. But Gett has been working to make up the drop by emphasizing its corporate customers, of which it counts 15,000, and working with other providers, such as Lyft.