13 May, 2021, 11:00 ET
ST. PAUL, Minn., May 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Upsie, a consumer-centric platform for purchasing product warranties, today announced it has raised a $18.2 million fundraising round led by True Ventures. Upsie will use the funds to hire, increase customer awareness and continue building its warranty product offerings and verticals.
In 2020, the NPD Group Retail Tracking Service saw a 17 percent increase in consumer electronics sales. Further, Market Research predicts that the consumer electronics market will continue to grow with the adoption of 5G, smart home assistants and smart appliances. Upsie protects these consumer electronics with its quick, convenient and simple warranty purchase and claims processes.
Electronics consumers in particular are regularly barraged with warranty protection add-ons when purchasing smartphones, tablets, earbuds, and the like from retailers. For these retailers, warranties are an efficient way to increase their profits, but not necessarily to serve their customers.
Data suggests only a fraction of these warranties are ever put to use. The policies themselves often lack clarity, the claims process is arduous and repairs often take weeks, leaving consumers without the devices they depend on for daily tasks. All of these factors have given warranties a bad name, but Upsie is on a mission to change all of that.
Upsie saves its customers up to 70 percent compared to competitor warranty plans. "We want more people to be able to protect what they buy with their hard-earned money," said Upsie Founder Clarence Bethea. "Removing the worry around paying out of pocket to repair, say, your kid's laptop is huge for families who have had to go with remote learning when the system doesn't make this easy for everyone."
According to Reuters, a spike in demand for laptops, desktops and tablets for distance learning and remote work caused a supply chain strain that might last until 2022. A lack of replacement devices makes warranties that offer efficient repairs, like Upsie's, all the more vital in keeping consumers connected to school and work. Further, only 46 percent of Americans have a rainy-day fund. It leaves little to tap when electronics fail.
Upsie customers can easily purchase a warranty online when it is convenient for them. They have up to 120 days to purchase smartphone protection, 11 months to purchase appliance, TV and fitness equipment protection, and up to 60 days for other consumer electronics.
Customers can start a claim on the Upsie platform or call the 24/7/365 U.S.-based claim center directly. Additionally, customers can transfer and cancel warranties easily online. All warranty information, including a copy of your product receipt, is stored in one place and is accessible at any time.
"People are busy; they don't have time to sit on hold for hours and can't afford to wait weeks for a repair," said Clarence Bethea. "We streamlined the entire process so many devices can be repaired and back in the customers hands on the same-day."
"Clarence and his team have created an incredible and joyful experience for customers purchasing consumer warranties, which is no small feat given where the industry has been," said Puneet Agarwal, partner at True Ventures. "We love the unique impact they are making and the passion the entire Upsie team has around putting consumers first."
This funding round includes participation from Concrete Rose VC, Avanta Ventures (CSAA Insurance Group, a AAA insurer), Kapor Capital, Samsung Next, Massive, Backstage Capital, Awesome People Ventures, Draft Ventures, Matchstick Ventures, M25, Silicon Valley Bank, Bread & Butter Ventures, Ordinary Ventures, Diverse Angels, Imagination Capital and Uncommon VC. Angel investors providing continued support include Marc Belton, Daren Cotter (Founder and CEO of InboxDollars), George Azih (Founder and CEO of LeaseQuery), Richard Parsons, Anton Vincent, Sri Pangulur, Damon DiVito, Jon and Lottie Rezneck and more.
Upsie was created in 2015 when CEO and founder Clarence Bethea discovered the inefficiencies in the warranty industry. The Upsie mission is to make warranties affordable, simple and easy-to-use. From smartphones, to appliances, to gaming consoles, Upsie protects thousands of devices. Anyone can purchase product warranties on the Upsie website or mobile app, where warranty information is stored and can be easily accessed. For more information on Upsie, please visit upsie.com.
About True Ventures
Founded in 2005, True Ventures is a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm that invests in early stage technology startups. With more than $2.8 billion under management, True provides seed and Series A financing to entrepreneurs in today's fastest growing markets. To date, the firm has helped more than 300 companies launch and scale their businesses, creating over 25,000 jobs worldwide. To learn more, visit www.trueventures.com.
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