Kenyan insurtech startup Turaco secures non-equity investment


Kenyan insurtech startup Turaco is one of four companies to have received non-equity funding from the Catalyst Fund accelerator.

Backed by JP Morgan Chase and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Catalyst Fund focuses on emerging markets startups, providing up to US$60,000 in non-equity capital and six months of technical assistance. 

It has selected four startups into its latest cohort, amongst them Kenya’s Turaco. The startup, which received US$40,000 in grant funding from Villgro Kenya late last year, provides low-cost, simple, accessible insurance products to low-income customers. 

With insurance payments as low as US$2, Turaco leverages mobile financial services to provide hospital cashback to customers who have sought treatment at any nationally-accredited hospital in the regions where they operate.

Another members of the cohort, the US-based Chipper Cash, also has an African focus, enabling free, peer-to-peer (P2P) mobile money transfers across the continent, while the list is completed by Southeast Asian customer engagement platform Salutat and Brazilian investment service Diin.

“These four startups were accepted into our latest cohort because of their intentional focus on low-income customers, their unique value propositions that create meaningful products and services that are relevant to them, and for their deliberate use of technology to reach customers living in low-tech, low-trust, low-resource, last-mile environments,” said Kelly Nguyen, assistant project manager at Catalyst Fund.

“As the newest companies to join Catalyst Fund’s acceleration programme, we look forward to enabling their growth and journey toward product-market fit using our proven strategies and tools. We will help them refine their value proposition, develop relevant proof points that investors want to see, and share the appropriate, affordable, and accessible framework to help them assess their potential for impact and inclusiveness.”


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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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