Brightway Insurance’s aim to become the “recognised leader” in insurance distribution and financial products in the US will be “turbocharged” by the majority investment from private equity firm GrowthCurve Capital, according to co-founder David Miller.

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As previously reported, GrowthCurve has taken a majority stake in the Florida-based personal lines-focused insurance franchisor to fuel its growth, with former QBE executive Mark Cantin (above center) drafted in as CEO.

Miller (pictured above left), who launched Brightway Insurance with his brother Michael (pictured above right) in 2008, said the new backer represents a “new breed” of private equity firm that will bring “tremendous operational expertise”.

“They’ve really tapped some of the leading minds in specific areas dealing with digital transformation, artificial intelligence and data science. They’re handpicking companies they believe are positioned to be transformational in their industries,” he told this publication in an interview after the deal was announced.

Prior to the transaction, Brightway Insurance had grown to 331 franchises in 29 states, managing nearly $900mn in annualised written premium.

GrowthCurve is a private equity firm focused on building businesses by leveraging data, analytics and machine learning.

Under the new partnership, the Millers will continue to hold significant minority ownership of the company. Michael Miller will join David Miller on the board of directors, and they together will work with GrowthCurve in setting the strategic vision for Jacksonville-based Brightway.

Speaking to The Insurer, David Miller said the firm will look to expand its geographic footprint under its new ownership.

He added that Brightway Insurance is using technology to create a platform and operating model that allows flexibility around consumer choice, rather than to become a technology-only driven company.

“At the end of the day that will win in the marketplace. There are many smart people out there who have worked hard on solving the wrong question. The first and most important piece is understanding the right question and that is what you’re trying to solve for around the consumer, not around one distribution channel or the other,” the executive said.

He explained that at different times a consumer might want to frictionlessly service their policies electronically online, but at other times need advice and want to interact with a person. They need to also be sure they’re with the right carrier for their needs.

“Right now it’s manual, people have to go and shop and do all this work. That’s a bad customer experience. We’ll end up in a situation where it’s automatically done for you and that’s always been our vision,” said Miller.

With the new backing and access to “some of the best minds”, actualising that vision will be accelerated, he added.