Oscar Health Insurance has almost reached the $1 billion mark in valuation, after acquiring another $80 million in funding.
Launched at the end of 2013, Oscar health Insurance relies on high tech to compete with the more established insurance firms. While operating like most other health insurance companies, Oscar differentiates itself by offering complementary generic medications and a user friendly on line portal which lets the insured fill in the information about their symptoms in easy to understand every day language. The computer system then passes this information on to a doctor for diagnosis and to schedule an appointment.
Members can find doctors with the aid of a Google Maps like finder. They can also compare the prices of services such as MRI’s, Cat-scans and sonograms.
Oscar health was founded by Joshua Kushner and his Thrive Capital, along with Kevin Nazemi and Mario Schlosser. Fittingly, Oscar used Tumblr yesterday to announce that it has raised another $80 million in investments. Formation 8’s Joe Lonsdale led the Series A Round, along with billionaires Jim Brewer of Breyer capital and Stanley Druckenmiller of Founders Fund.
The insurance company currently has 60 employees and is expected to use this new funding to hire more and to expand into other parts of the U.S.
Valued at as much as $800 million, Oscar reportedly has 16, 000 clients. Today it only operates in New York State and charges customers an average of $4, 500 a year. This would give the health insurer annual revenue estimated at $72 million. Not bad after only eighteen months in business.
The company’s founders acknowledge that it has a high valuation against current revenue. On its Tumblr posting they said, “Oscar’s early successes have enabled us to raise the capital we need to support our current business. There is a common misconception in the technology industry that raising capital is correlated with success. Financing is not innovation, nor should it be celebrated. On the contrary, we have a tremendous amount of work to do.”
Joshua Kushner, 28, is the founder and managing partner of Thrive Capital. The son of real estate developer Charles Kushner, the New Jersey native graduated from Harvard in 2008 and holds and MBA from the Harvard Business School. His brother is Jared Kushner, the real estate mogul who is married to Ivanka Trump.
He is also the co founder and chief strategic officer of Vostu, Brazil’s largest social gaming company. Joshua also serves as a principal in his family’s Kushner Companies.
He took time off from Thrive to establish Oscar health and Insurance, saying about the new venture, “We wanted to create an experience like having a doctor in the family.”
Thrive Capital was established by Kushner in 2009. It is a private equity and venture capital firm which focuses on media and internet investments. Thrive invested $50 million in Instagram’s Series B round of fundraising and, according to Forbes, when the company was sold to Facebook Thrive doubled its money in only 72 hours.
Stanley Freeman Druckenmiller, 60, is a hedge fund manager and former chairman and president of Duquesene Capital, which he founded in 1981. In 2010 he told clients that he was retiring and returning their money because of the “high emotional toll of not performing up to his own expectations, ” and closed Duquesene.
A philanthropist, Druckenmiller gave away $705 million to foundations that support medical research, education and poverty in 2009. He is the chairman of the board of the Harlem Children’s Zone, a community project, and has given it $25 million.
He has an estimated net worth of $3.1 billion.