“VCs really need to look a bit broader,” the 29-year-old entrepreneur told CNBC.
“The number of times a VC said: ‘I wouldn’t respond to cold emails because you should be able to hustle and intro to me.’ It’s much easier to hustle and intro to you if you went to your university and you know a ton of people that know you.”
Meanwhile, Kent-Braham’s firm, Marshmallow, raised $85 million in a funding round raising the firm’s value to $1.25 billion. The cash comes from existing investors such as Passion Capital, an early investor in digital bank Monzo, as well as South African bank Investec and French reinsurer Scor.
Additionally, the Kent-Braham brothers will still control most of the business. The pair co-founded Marshmallow with software engineer David Goaté, who they previously worked with at London start-up Yoti.
A digital-only insurance provider
Marshmallow is a digital-only insurance provider. The British firm started offering insurance mainly to expats who face higher charges from traditional insurers. The company is authorized by the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority. It uses machine learning to adjust policies for customers as a key advantage over incumbents in the industry like Admiral and Axa.