Bestow Closes $50M Series B and Launches its Own Nonprofit to Assist Those in Financial Distress

Through the Bestow Foundation, the Dallas-based digital life insurance startup will give financial support to those in need during a crisis or disaster. First up is a donation to the CDC Foundation to help combat COVID-19.

Bestow, the Dallas-based startup behind the first truly modern life insurance platform, has launched its own 501(c)(3) nonprofit. It’s a well-timed announcement: The organization was created to assist those most in financial need during a crisis.

So, the Bestow Foundation plans to donate to the CDC Foundation on behalf of current and new Bestow policyholders to do its part in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. Bestow picked the CDC Foundation because of its dedication to funding medical supplies, increasing lab capacity, deploying emergency staffing to public health agencies, and more throughout the healthcare crisis.

Melbourne O’Banion, co-founder and CEO of Bestow, said this follows the establishment of a foundation to assist families struggling with financial hardship after the loss of a loved one.

“Providing a positive social impact is central to why we founded Bestow. Now is the right time for our foundation’s inaugural donation in support of those on the frontline helping through this crisis,” he said. “We recognize the impact made by the CDC Foundation and are fortunately in a position to help contribute to their efforts through the Bestow Foundation.”


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The nonprofit’s launch follows the news that Bestow completed its Series B in February, according to a statement. The $50 million Bestow raised was led by Valar Ventures, with contributions from current investors (NEA, Morpheus Ventures, and Core Innovation Capital) and new participation from Sammons Financial. 

Bestow is backed by some of the top coastal VCs, which combined with a growing team in Dallas and Austin, has enabled it to innovate in a regulated industry.

With Bestow, life insurance is fully digital. Data makes the application lightning fast, and in less than 10 minutes, customers are able to purchase up to seven-figure coverage, replacing the up to months-long process and eliminating the need for medical exams and blood tests. The technology also enables smarter underwriting, which allows Bestow to offer more affordable plans.

“Our products fit a modern family’s lifestyle and solve for the pain points of the life insurance buying process,” O’Banion previously told us. “When you can call a car, order food to your door, or book a trip in a matter of minutes, why should life insurance be any different?”

Starting this year, Bestow said it plans to expand nationally and continue backing initiatives that “extend healthy lives or offer financial support to those in distress” through the Bestow Foundation.

“Insurance is by definition a preventative product, and leveraging technology to democratize access to financial protection is social empowerment,” Jonathan Abelmann, Bestow’s co-founder and president, said in a statement. “We aim to help ensure that every life is protected and valued, especially in the face of the unexpected. That’s why the foundation is so complementary to our mission.”

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