Qoala selected for Surge programme

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Company brief

Sequoia Capital India has selected Indonesia-based insurtech Qoala as one of the startups that will take part in its 16-week ‘Surge’ programme: a rapid scale-up programme for startups in India and Southeast Asia which combines $1.5 million of seed capital with company building workshops, global immersion trips and support from a community of founders.

Over 1,570 startups across India and Southeast Asia applied for the initiative by February, but Qoala – which was founded by Oxford University and UCL graduates Harshet Lunani and Tommy Martin, and was launched in September last year – was among the 18 successful applicants. Working alongside major insurers, the company develops insurance products for new use cases, including flight delays, hotel quality checks, e-commerce logistics and phone screen damages, which it then sells to end customers through its wide network of ecosystem partners.

The startup underwrites risk for high-frequency events, provides digital fraud detections and utilises a photo-based claims process via machine learning – all of which aim to create a seamless customer experience while helping insurers cut costs and risks through fraud detection.

Qoala has also been chosen to be part of the regulatory sandbox initiative of Indonesia’s Financial Services Authority (OJK), which enables the startup to test its products and services in the real market at a potentially lower cost to the company.