Let us pitch you the W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator

The W1 Forward Accelerator Program is designed for early-stage startups, helping to turn validated entrepreneurial ideas market- and investor-ready. The tailor-made 2-month program is targeted at cross-industry international startups that want to make an impact on the insurance business with their digital solutions. The accelerator includes workshops, one-on-one mentoring and coaching sessions to aid startups in becoming experts in insurance, and ready to build pilots with InsurTech corporate members.

Founded in 2015 and with three batches under our belt, we can offer access to a huge network of mentors, coaches, investors and allies both within the industry, in universities and with our startup alumni. But our true USP is the unparalleled access we provide startups to our fourteen insurance members. They range from international market leaders to local champions with a true interest in startup cooperation and partnership-building.

The W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator is performed in cooperation with WERK1, ‘the most start-up-friendly place in Munich‘. WERK1 is a startup hub, funded by the Bavarian ministry for economic affairs, on a mission to unleash the great potential of the Munich startup ecosystem.

We’re looking for true disruptors, people who think big and outside the box, founders that come up with unexpected ideas. The program is open to both early and venture-backed technology startups with a vision to revolutionize the insurance industry and a validated concept or prototype (demonstrate early traction or provide data points) and be open to refining the concept.

InsurTech Hub Munich

Established insurance companies have realized their biggest competitors are no longer their industry peers, but rather the Tech Big 5 or Insurtech unicorns. Reliant on traditional and large structures they often have a hard time coping with these fast-moving new players. That’s where InsurTech Hub Munich (ITHM) enters the stage: Our mission is bringing insurers together with promising entrepreneurs, academia, government agencies and cross-industry partners.

ITHM hosts events, frequent networking opportunities, knowledge-sharing workshops or meetups, partners with internationally renowned events, like the DIA Conference – and most importantly, two different international accelerator programs, all to bring innovators and corporates in the insurtech world together. W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator is designed to make early stage startups market- and investor-ready. Once startups have reached a later stage, InsurTech Europe powered by Plug&Play assists them in the scaling phase.

Our startup ecosystem is not based on dog-walking apps or the next hip smoothie startup: Being an InsurTech means participating in the enabling industry with a market size of €1,2bn just in Europe. Without insurance, self-driving cars won’t be allowed on the road. Without insurance cyber criminals would be able to bring down big companies within the glimpse of an eye. Without insurance the majority of people would basically be prevented from consulting a doctor, own or rent an apartment, ride a car or take financial care for their family and themselves.

The best ideas come from all backgrounds and industries – therefore we heavily urge startups to think big! We’re looking for true disruptors, people who think outside the box and come up with really unexpected ideas. We dare you to find a startup that doesn’t apply to the insurance market.

As a founding hub of the Federal Ministry’s Digital Hub Initiative, ITHM works closely with fifteen other hubs, each focused on their own vertical, aimed at putting Germany on the global digitization heatmap. Apart from its 12 insurance industry partners – ranging from international market leaders to local champions – ITHM cooperates closely with other firms with insurance interests like Roche and PwC, universities, government agencies as well as Silicon Valley innovation platform Plug & Play.

Meet the Team

Manuel Holzhauer

Managing Director

Dr. Florian Mann

Executive Director ITHM / CEO Werk1

Ben Shaw

Director, Programs & Strategy

Corine Ackermann

Community & Events Manager

Christian Gnam

Director, Partner Management

Lisa Worgall

Project Manager

Markus Walter

Communications Manager

What you get from the program

Intensive eight weeks program with top-notch coaching and mentoring sessions & interactive workshops

Munich is your access point to the capital of European insurance with over 16 German/European headquarters

Become part of our ecosystem which is your door-opener to high-level insurance experts looking to build POCs

Numerous event formats like DIA where you can pitch on center stage and network with potential investors, partners and peers

W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator ist THE program for early-stage startups – we make you market and investor ready

Rely on our strong network of partners like Silicon Valley later-stage Platform Plug&Play or German cross-industry network de:hubs

Who we are looking for

If you are a smart, early-stage startup with a ready go-to-market concept / MVP and think we can make insurance companies and services more attractive, cheaper and more efficient, you´re the one for W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator.

Game Changers


Wiz Kids

Cross-Industry Thinkers


Do you have a great team, who supports you to make a scalable business out of your concept?

Do you have a willingness to work intensively and hard to achieve a stage where your startup reaches a market-fit and investment-readiness?

Are you willing to relocate to Munich for the duration of the program?


8 weeks of intensive program



8 weeks of intensive program

The program in numbers


8 weeks


up to 10 teams


up to 50 mentors


Access to 14 insurance partners and industry experts

Some of this year’s mentors

Julia Gerner

Investment Manager at Dieter von Holtzbrinck Ventures

Karl Grandl

Managing Director at Wefox

Florian Waubke

CEO FairFleet & Pepperfish

Barbara Meyer

CEO DACH Innoleaps & SBC

Karl Viertel

CEO & Founder at Alyne

Christian Sili

CEO at Deutsche Kautionskasse AG

Dimitar Siljanovski

Founder Munyx & Intertec

Dr. Tristan Behrens

Senior Data Scientist and AI Expert

Florian Stehbeck

Digital Innovation Manager at MAN Truck & Bus AG

Amanda Birkenholz

Co-Founder at VISN and Senior Digital Innovation Manager at mantro

Tobias Kulzer

Insurance Specialist at BMW

Florian Dietrich

Director Strategic Partnerships at TIMIFY

What the startups say about our program?

Our current batch

Easily store, manage, evaluate and insure your personal belongings – everything in one app with just a few clicks!

AvoCard automates your invoices and refunds. Invoices get sent to the health insurances and refunds get allocated automatically.

Previondo creates substantial and lasting improvements to patients’ health through the use of personalized digital health solutions. The vision is to build the leading patient centered digital health ecosystem, that is integrated into major payment systems and offers the best solutions for the most dominant healthcare issues throughout a patients lifetime

Instant and automated commercial property data powered by AI. Tensorflight specializes in satellite and street view imagery automated analysis for the insurance industry.

zentor is a digital mentor for science-based inspiration & projects for the pursuit of happiness.

The intelligent software helps companies process unstructured data smoothly. Transforming the three most important data sources of a company: Procurement, distribution and customer service.

The first digital therapy system for individual rehabilitation. reFit develops state-of-the-art digital solutions for healthcare and medical technology. Specialties are the digitization and gamification of medical processes.

WechselGott brings all your bank accounts together in one app and in the future lets you automatically switch from all your insurance, power, gas and internet contracts.

Augmenting decision makers with AI. BRAINCITIES bridges the gap between humans and their ever-changing environments by making ecosystems like cities and companies smarter with its human-supportive Artificial Intelligence.

Our Alumni

MedPayRx is a unique, end-to-end, blockchained, GDPR compliant, digital prescription and claims service.

Kruzr is AI-powered driving assistant mobile app that makes driving safe by mitigating ~75% causes of crashes. Kruzr helps motor insurance companies reduce claims, improve customer engagement and implement policy personalization.

Freya gives women the freedom to choose when and how to have children and have support they need. Freya guides them through their journey, helps them understand their health risks and have access to tips and advice to enjoy life, work and stay healthy.

Nect provides verified smart digital identities to be used across all insurance companies to give customers an easy and secure access to services and offerings.

The next underwriting generation product deals with big data to reduce the huge risk amounts within insurance companies and to predict important underwriting characteristics by applying machine learning and artificial intelligence concepts.

The Snapsure insurance-bot, with image recognition and product-logics, generates automatically insurance offers only based on a snapshot and optional user-data on any device, any platforms and any marketplace. Simple insure with a snapshot.

DOCYET develops a digital health concierge, helping patients to find their way through the healthcare system, delivering decision support and matching them with medical services on- and offline.

We enable insurance companies to be closer to their customers while automating the process of claim handling and fraud prevention over a live video call.

ClaimSpace is a platform for insurance companies to efficiently communicate and engage with their customers during the claim process. ClaimSpace can be used as a standalone solution or as a layer sitting on top of legacy systems to offer visibility, saving significant time and costs.

MotionsCloud provides mobile claims solution for insurers & claims experts in property insurances.

Etherisc builds decentralized insurance in order to make insurance accessible and affordable for everyone.

Personiq is an identity management framework that allows companies to verify the digital identity of their customers in compliance with GDPR and e-privacy.

Karlsson provides digital, convenient health insurance, sold directly to the customer.

Prewave is an artificial intelligence startup helping large (re)insurance companies gain awareness on man-made risks in order to prevent losses, make better and more profitable underwriting decisions and make the previously uninsurable insurable.

e-bot7 integrates an AI layer into existing or custom CRM systems to increase the efficiency of customer service operations. By training a convolutional neural network based on historical support requests we can quickly and efficiently classify support queries, forward them to the right agents, and suggest the best answers to agents. This reduces average handling time by up to 50% and automates repetitive and recurring questions.

twingz delivers predictive analytics based on anomaly detection out of energy meterdata feeds & provides damage prevention services on top.

A real-time predictive BI SaaS solution using the latest research in machine learning & state of the art Big Data technologies

Health check-up in your pocket? HeartShield recognizes heart disease risk on any smartphone, without extra hardware using brain-inspired artificial intelligence

Tapoly provides on demand insurance for the sharing economy, focusing on the lifestyle of freelancers and contractors, and bridging the gap between their custom needs and the standard products offered by insurance companies.

Mission completed: Alumni of the 3rd batch W1 Forward InsurTech Accelerator

Want more information?

The partners

Bayerisches Wirtschaftsministerium
Dai-Ichi Life
Die Bayerische
Gründerland Bayern
Huk Coburg
Landeshauptstadt München
LV 1871
Münchener Rück
Plug and Play

The supporters

Economic Trade
Hochschule Coburg
Swiss Re
TU München
Versicherungsforen Leipzig