Some of Hollywood's biggest names are teaming up to back a surprising insurance startup. San Francisco-based Ethos Technologies Inc., which was founded last year, recently launched a unique new product featuring a streamlined process for buying term life insurance. The startup hopes to make buying life insurance faster and cheaper, and now some big names are on board to back the venture.
The company quickly raised $11.5 million in a round led by Silicon Valley's Sequoia Capital. But some of the other investors named in the round look like a who's who of a Hollywood awards show. According to Bloomberg, Jay-Z's entertainment company Roc Nation, Robert Downey Jr.'s Downey Ventures, basketball star Kevin Durant's Durant Co., and Will Smith's Smith Family are all investors of the Silicon Valley startup.
The high-profile investors may have been attracted to Ethos Life cofounders, Stanford MBAs Peter Colis and Lingke Wang, and their unique way of looking at life insurance. The company hopes to transform the life insurance industry by taking middleman agents out of the process and eliminating most medical tests to speed policy approvals. The Ethos Life policies will be easy to understand and the cost will be much more affordable than traditional life insurance plans, making it possible for anyone to get term a term policy without a hassle.