For immediate release

For more information:
Jennifer Overhulse
Phone: (859) 803-6597

Global Insurance Accelerator Welcomes Largest Cohort

Emerging technologies and business models to be accelerated in U.S. insurance capital.

DES MOINES, IA, January 10, 2018 - The 2018 cohort of the Global Insurance Accelerator (GIA), the world's first business accelerator focused on insurance technology (InsurTech) innovation, is the largest class to-date, representing four distinct countries and technologies which span all insurance lines of business in terms of applicability.

The 100-day, mentor-driven program kicks off on January 16, and will give this year's startup teams an important opportunity to become immersed in the technology and insurance-rich environment in Iowa generally and Des Moines in particular. During the program, the GIA provides cohort members hands-on business support from program mentors, exposure to insurance company professionals, industry influencers and potential additional investors, as well as opportunities for extensive networking and education.

The 2018 GIA cohort includes companies which have built innovative products and business models incorporating artificial intelligence (AI), gamification, continuous underwriting, portals, apps, IoT/connected world devices, and much more. Cohort teams for 2018 include:

"The companies the GIA typically brings in to the program may be early stage, but the technologies they are working with and the applications they are developing for the industry get more interesting and mature each year," said Brian Hemesath, managing director of the GIA. "This is going to be an awesome year."

The GIA cohort members receive $40,000 in funding in exchange for six percent equity. Each startup also receives subsidized housing for the duration of the program, which is one block from the accelerator's office. Most importantly, the GIA's mentor-driven program provides cohort members with direct connections to invaluable firsthand knowledge of the industry and insights from true industry experts. The GIA's fourth cohort concludes with the startups pitching live onstage at the Global Insurance Symposium at the end of April.

Based in Des Moines, the GIA is backed by insurance company investors from across Iowa and the U.S., including Allstate, American Equity Investment Life Holding Company, Delta Dental of Iowa, EMC Insurance, Farm Bureau Financial Services, Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance of Iowa, Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company, IMT Insurance Company, Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company, Markel Corporation, Principal Financial Group, SFM, Voya Financial and W.R. Berkley Corporation.

For information on becoming an investor in the GIA, or on applying for the 2019 GIA program, please visit


Launched in 2015, the Global Insurance Accelerator (GIA) fosters innovation in and for the insurance industry via a mentor-driven, 100-day program. GIA supports an annual cohort by providing each graduate company $40K of seed money in exchange for six percent equity. During the program, cohort members get insurance-specific mentoring via 1:1 meetings with industry executives, as well as basic business infrastructure assistance, coaching on garnering investments, and product-specific insights into strategies for increasing applicability to and feasibility for the insurance industry. The GIA extended network includes insurance company investors, startups and mentors from across the global business and insurance communities. For more details please visit