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Denim selected to partner with SBC Colab in London

Denim has been selected to partner with Startupbootcamp Colab InsurTech London (SBC Colab).

An innovation program that’s part of Startup Bootcamp, SBC Colab identifies insurers’ priorities and gaps within their business operations. It then supports those insurance companies by aligning them with the most applicable markets and emerging technologies.

Starting in January 2019, Denim CEO Gregory Bailey will spend two separate weeks in London working with some of the largest insurance and financial services brands in the world.

By the end of the January Denim expects to have its first two international customers, a South African-based life insurance company and a UK-based banking group that owns retail and commercial banks and insurance companies.

“We always knew, from the early days of founding the company, that we could expand internationally,” Bailey said. “And coming into the end of 2018, we’ve had a number of different active conversations with potential customers internationally but have yet to sign an international customer. So when SBC Colab sought us out, we saw it as a big opportunity to fast-forward our international expansion opportunities.”

Unlike the Global Insurance Accelerator in Des Moines, SBC Colab does not recruit early-stage startups, Bailey told Clay and Milk.

“Being part of the startup bootcamp family and part of their ecosystem I’m very confident is going to allow us tremendous opportunities to many global expansions,” Bailey said. “Whether its through introductions or just having extended networks of people that we don’t know.”

This isn’t the first time Denim has received international recognition. Earlier this year, Denim was named an InsurTech 100 by London-based FinTech Global. 

Previous coverage…

Denim Summit 2018 examines the InsurTech and FinTech industries -Oct. 30, 2018

Denim launches Smart Campaigns -Oct. 3, 2018

Denim selected to partner with SBC Colab in London | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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