Oscar Health raises $165 million at reported $3B valuation

Oscar Health, the startup run by Josh Kushner (yes, brother of Jared), has raised $165 million at a reported valuation of $3.2 billion, CNBC’s Christina Farr reports. The funding comes from Alphabet’s Capital G investment company and Verily life sciences corporation, Founders Fund and others.

Oscar’s goal is to outpace existing industry-leading insurers, including UnitedHealth and Aetna, with an emphasis on mobile technology, including an appointment booking app and other tools for encouraging engaged consumers across its platform.

The startup seemed to be in some potential trouble because of its focus providing an insurance marketplace for Affordable Care Act beneficiaries, but the company has changed its model to one in which customers are charged higher premiums, and with closer relationships with a select group of care providers to help them work out more competitive pricing.

Per CNBC, Oscar Health also left the door open for potential partnerships with one of its newest investors, Verily. The Alphabet-owned healthtech company has a number of potential ventures it’s working on, and insurance could feature in a few of those plans, so this could turn out to be a very strategic investor partner.

Visualizing the slave insurance industry

 Similar to the way people insure their cars, houses and lives, slave-owners would sometimes insure their slaves. Fearful of not getting their money’s worth from their slaves, owners would sometimes take out insurance policies on them. In the 1800s, for example, some slave-owners who rented out their slaves would insure them so that, in the event their slaves died or were severely injured… Read More