Insuretech platform Turtlemint raised a $120 million worth Series E round at the start of the ongoing fiscal year (FY23). That investment also put it on the soonicorn list —startups that are close to achieving the unicorn valuation—as the company’s valuation reportedly soared to over $900 million. Meanwhile, the company’s financials have also grown, albeit not as much as expected.
Turtlemint’s operating revenue grew 57% in FY22 to Rs 99 crore even as profit surged 4.4X as compared to the previous fiscal year, according to its annual financial statements with the Registrar of Companies (RoC).
For the uninitiated, Turtlemint offers advisory services and third-party insurance products (via agents), generating its revenue from commission and brokerage. Collection from this source surged around 61% to Rs 97.3 crore in FY22. The company also collected Rs 1.78 crore in consideration of services provided to insurers.
Seven-year-old Turtlemint connects insurance advisors and customers through its marketplace and offers distribution for third-party insurance products across categories like vehicle, life, and health. The company claims to have 160,000 insurance advisors on its platform which helps 45 insurers including Reliance General Insurance, Bajaj Allianz, Digit, and ICICI Lombard to sell their policies.
On the expenses front, employee benefit was the largest cost center which formed nearly 47% of the total expenditure. This expenditure increased 10.5% to Rs 42 crore in FY22 from Rs 38 crore in FY21. To boost the sale of insurance products, the company spent 17% of its overall expenses on commission charges (paid to sell agents). This expenditure grew 24.6% to Rs 15.2 crore in FY22 from Rs 12.2 crore in FY21.
The startup also incurred website usage and advertising-promotional expenses of Rs 12.1 crore and Rs 11.67 crore respectively during FY22.
On the lines of its revenue, Turtlemint’s total expenditure also surged 48% to Rs 89.66 crore in FY22 from Rs 60.7 crore in FY21. Unlike FY21 when the company’s profit dwindled 55%, it witnessed a 4.4X jump to Rs 7.21 crore in FY22.
Growth in scale and profits helped the company to refine the ratios and its EBITDA margin as well as ROCE improved to 10.40% and 59.10% in FY22. On a unit level, the company spent Rs 0.91 to earn a rupee of operating revenue.
Turtlemint is one of very few companies which has managed to scale online to offline (popularly known as 020) model in India but its growth and scale are far from being impressive. The company also appears to have missed the revenue estimates for the fiscal year ending March 2022. According to a MoneyControl report in November last year which cited the firm’s internal document, Turtlemint was anticipating around Rs 400 crore in revenue during FY22. Competition is also intense, from players like Paisabazaar to even direct selling from insurance firms themselves.