Insurtech infrastructure company Curacel — an AI-powered platform for claims processing and fraud management in Africa — has just announced a raise of a $450,000 pre-seed funding round to accelerate product development and expansion efforts for the startup across the African continent.

According to a press release shared with AfroTech, the funding round was led by Atlantica Ventures and Consonance with participation from Kepple Ventures and other African angel investors.

Curacel — which was originally founded in 2018 — reveals that the new funding will be used to help facilitate Curacel’s goal of becoming Africa’s premier provider of embedded finance technology for insurance and drive insurance inclusion across 10 new African countries by the end of 2021.

“We are excited to have these investors on board and we are looking forward to partnering with them to drive our vision of improving insurance inclusion across Africa,” Curacel co-founder and CEO, Henry Mascot shares in a statetment. “At Curacel, we are uniquely positioned to safeguard livelihoods and increase the quality of life through our unique, market-leading products and services.”

Curacel’s mission is to “create a world with equal economic opportunities and prosperity” and “drive up insurance inclusion in emerging markets using technology,” the company’s website states.

Techpoint Africa shares that Africa’s insurance penetration is low — roughly below 3% — due to ignorance, the continent’s economic state, and illiteracy. A press release also shares that each year African insurers lose out on more than $12 billion due to fraudulent, wasteful, and abusive claims, leaving them left with the burden.

As a solution to this problem, Curacel’s platform operates as a liaison between primary care hospitals and Africa’s insurance companies to help de-risk and protect them.

By using advanced AI technology and leveraging its products and services, Curacel is able to ensure that health insurance companies are only responsible for paying for claims for the correct treatment, appropriate medications and recommended patient therapies. Additionally, the solutions that Curacel provides helps insurers close the insurance gap and safeguard prosperity.

In regards to backing Curacel’s platform, IK Kanu — Partner at Atlantica Ventures — stated that “the African insurance market represents a significant growth opportunity and we are delighted to be partnering with Curacel to drive growth in this sector.”

“There is an opportunity to create an entirely new market of products and services here and we look forward to supporting the team to improve health outcomes across the continent,” he added.

Currently, the insurtech startup is already in touch with some of the biggest insurance companies in Africa, including AXA Mansard, Liberty Health and Old Mutual, and works with more than 800 hospitals in Nigeria, Ghana, and Uganda.

In addition to its funding round, Curacel also shares that it’s scheduled to launch a new product called Curacel Capital — a cash advance product that better equips healthcare providers to access working capital in order to mitigate financial challenges.

To help avoid delayed payments and other payment inefficiencies, Curacel Capital offers healthcare providers access to lump sums of money up to three times their average monthly billings, based on claims processed through the Curacel portal. Thus, guaranteeing insurers are able to continue delivering essential services without any disruptions.

To date, Curacel has helped their clients reduce fraud, waste and abuse claims payouts by up to 25%, saving them more than $320,000 total, its website shares. 

With a focus on expanding its business model, Curacel hopes to become Africa’s surefire solution to lead insurance inclusion for the continent at-large.

For more information about Curacel, visit its website.