Bitcoin-based life insurance company established with $19M funding.

The life insurance company Meanwhile Insurance Bitcoin (Bermuda) announced that it has raised $19 million in order to develop a bitcoin-denominated policy aided by artificial intelligence (AI), as it looks to tap into the growing economy around the world’s largest cryptocurrency.

The Bermuda Monetary Authority-licensed company said that it raised the funds across two seed rounds. The first round was co-led by Sam Altman, CEO of ChatGPT developer OpenAI, and former Stripe executive Lachy Groom. The second was led by Gradient Ventures. Meanwhile Insurance Bitcoin was previously called Standard Crypto Insurance, and is registered under that name with the BMA, CEO Zac Townsend told CoinDesk.

The funding will be used to hire a development team for the company’s first product, according to an emailed announcement on Tuesday. Its initial target audience is US citizens with large bitcoin holdings who are looking to protect their families in a tax-advantaged way, an audience from which Townsend said the firm has “seen a lot of early demand.”

The company plans to use AI to help with underwriting, claims, and operations, according to the statement. Townsend said the volatility typically associated with the bitcoin price isn’t a concern for Meanwhile Insurance Bitcoin.

The company believes that it makes perfect sense for long-term holders of bitcoin to invest in life insurance denominated in that asset, and to enable a percentage of their bitcoin holdings to become active,” Townsend said.

While the insurer may be relatively immune to bitcoin fluctuations, policyholders will be shouldering some of the risk because price changes will determine the value of their payouts.

“Today’s price, tomorrow’s price, that doesn’t matter. What matters is BTC being valuable in the long-term future,” Townsend said.

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Edited by Sheldon Reback.