SA insurtech startup Pineapple wins $1.5m in US-based VentureClash challenge

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South African insurtech startup Pineapple has won the single biggest prize at the annual VentureClash challenge in the United States (US), securing US$1.5 million from a US$5 million prize fund.

Founded in 2017, Pineapple allows users to get quotes and insurance on items with just the snap of a picture.

The startup raised funding in 2017 and has taken part in Google’s Launchpad Africa accelerator and the US-based Hartford Insurtech Hub, and was named a finalist in the VentureClash competition back in September.

Managed by Connecticut Innovations, VentureClash is a global venture challenge that identifies early-stage companies in digital health, fintech, insurtech and the Internet of Things (IoT) to receive investments from a US$5 million investment award pool.

Eleven businesses pitched at a final event for a share of the prize money, with Pineapple named overall winner and banking US$1.5 million. The startup had already been awarded the US$25,000 VentureClash Innovation Prize, awarded to VentureClash competitors developing solutions and pursuing market opportunities in insurtech.

“We are excited about what this means for the future of software development in South Africa. It shows that we can compete on a global stage and that there is a bright future for the South African technology industry,” said Pineapple chief technology officer (CTO) Ndabenhle Ngulube.

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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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