authors Geert De Lombaerde
A local startup that helps businesses evaluate insurance brokers has landed growth financing from Martin Ventures and some well-known local health care executives.
Mployer Advisor was founded about a year and a half ago by Brian Freeman, who had previously spent about a decade in the strategy and finance groups at HCA Healthcare. The 10-person company came to market early this year and has aggregated more than 25,000 reviews of health and property and casualty insurance brokerages. It also has built an algorithm that assigns brokers a Morningstar-style rating based on their experience. Its platform is free to companies and plans to generate its revenue from selling advertising to high-rated brokers looking to get in front of HR professionals.
“The selection of an insurance broker is a critical, but often overlooked, decision that impacts health care cost and employee satisfaction more than the choice of an insurance carrier,” Freeman said. “Our goal is to provide employers with actionable analytics to evaluate and select the best insurance advisor for their company’s unique needs.”
Freeman isn’t disclosing the size of Mployer’s funding round from Martin, which was joined by Hal Andrews, Scott MacKenzie and Jeff Pate. Andrews, who used to run Martin Ventures and now leads Trilliant Health, and Pate, a principal and the chief development officer at consulting firm PYA, are members of Mployer’s board. MacKenzie is a former CEO of Passport Health Communications and M*Modal, among others, and now heads up revenue cycle technology company RevSpring.
The timing of Mployer’s coming to market could prove fortuitous. Freeman told the Post the COVID-19 pandemic has led to the health insurance and benefits markets seeing less movement than normal as many companies’ HR point people spent much of 2020 focused on other priorities rather than explore new plans or options. That should lead to a much higher level of activity in 2021 in a market where Freeman said businesses typically spend $100 billion per year on fees and commissions.
“Thousands of businesses already use Mployer Advisor to research and evaluate brokers,” Martin Ventures CEO Devin Carty said in a statement. “We are excited about Mployer Advisor’s growth potential and see the company at the forefront of creating a new marketplace to benefit both employers and insurance advisors.”
Freeman said his team plans to invest its new capital in its analytics, product development and marketing efforts. The company also plans to hire some more people but Freeman said the scope of those plans aren’t yet firm.