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BimaLab Africa Accelerator Expands Reach with $600,000 Funding Boost


The BimaLab Africa Insurtech Accelerator Program, an initiative by FSD Africa, has secured $600,000 in funding from the Swiss Re Foundation. This financial boost will enable the program to extend its reach across five additional African countries, complementing its existing presence in ten nations. With the new support expected to last until 2025, BimaLab Africa aims to accelerate 55 insurtechs across a total of 15 African countries.

Launched in 2020 by FSD Africa in Kenya and supported by the Swiss Re Foundation since 2023, the BimaLab Africa Insurtech Accelerator Programme provides practical venture-building assistance to insurtech startups. These innovative companies help sustain underserved and climate-vulnerable communities and businesses across the continent. The recently added nations include Tanzania, Tunisia, Senegal, Zambia, Malawi, and Somalia, joining the previous roster of Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.

The program fosters an ecosystem that brings together insurance innovators, technology partners, insurance firms, investors, and regulators. This collaborative approach aims to secure capital, attract talent, and democratize insurance solutions, addressing critical challenges such as climate change, health, and gender disparities, as well as roadblocks faced by micro, small, and medium-sized insurance businesses. The impetus for this initiative stems from Africa’s significant protection gap, where uninsured natural disaster losses accounted for 80% of total economic losses in 2022, a 22% increase from the previous year. Custom, innovative insurance solutions are crucial to bridging this gap and providing a safety net for individuals and businesses affected by catastrophes like natural disasters, health crises, or economic disruptions.

Stefan Huber Fux, Director of the Swiss Re Foundation, emphasized the importance of insurance in proactively safeguarding people and businesses from such calamities. He expressed the foundation’s commitment to supporting BimaLab Africa in creating an insurtech innovation ecosystem that will foster the growth of insurtechs and help them reach underserved markets, communities, and households across the continent.

According to Elias Omondi, BimaLab Africa Programme Lead, the initiative has already made significant strides. Over the last four years, it has supported 63 startups, facilitated the development of three regulatory sandboxes, and enabled investors to back 10 ventures with over $10 million in funding. As a result, these efforts have led to the development of 40 products reaching over 3 million new customers across Africa.



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