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Hiro: Supporting the UK's Fastest Ever Insurtech Crowdfund with a Pandemic Pivot

  • X-Tech
  • Technology

Hiro: Supporting the UK's Fastest Ever Insurtech Crowdfund with a Pandemic Pivot


Time to smash Seedrs crowdfund target


pieces of coverage across business, trade & personal finance media


Opportunity to See

Helping a Newly Formed Insurtech Start-Up Build Credibility

Innovation company Hero Labs initially engaged PAN in early 2020 to raise awareness of its smart home tech, including a smart leak detector. However, as the pandemic hit, Hero Labs’ production in China ground to a halt, home installations of its products became impossible, and funding dried up as its main financial backer collapsed. Hero Labs’ founder quickly pivoted, restructuring the company to create Hiro, and accelerating the development of a smart home insurance product. 

The next step was to help the newly formed insurtech start-up Hiro build credibility and relevance to support a fundraise ahead of its UK launch via PAN’s NXT Stage approach. 

The PAN team has helped us put Hiro on the map in a short space of time. Their creativity and media relations work has helped fast track our credibility with investors and homeowners and contributed to our hugely successful crowdfund.
Krystian Zajac | CEO and Founder
The Challenge

PAN was re-briefed in late 2020 to raise awareness of new fundraise for Hiro and prime customers ahead of the launch in 2021. Because of our initial work, the Hiro insurance product had already been mentioned in the media, making a fresh ‘launch’ more difficult and requiring expert storytelling.

The Solution
Messaging and Positioning

We began by highlighting how traditional home insurance was broken; we argued it failed to reward millions of homeowners for the steps they’d already taken to protect their homes from fire, flood and theft using smart home tech. In contrast, Hiro would offer discounts of up to 25% for homeowners with protective smart tech.  

Strategic Media Relations

This narrative was told through a series of by-lines, profiles, data-driven press releases and thought leader comments across trade media.  

Data-Driven Storytelling

We commissioned an independent study of 3,000 British households, which showed people would switch to an insurance provider (like Hiro) that discounted their insurance based on their use of protective smart home tech. The study also proved that smarter homes were safer homes: in fact, it showed homeowners with one or more smart devices are 35% less likely to suffer a claim greater than £5,000 in the past five years. This underscored why a discount was fair.

Funding Visibility

We worked with Hiro to launch a crowdfunding drive through Seedrs, with the aim of raising capital, whilst simultaneously also creating a community of Hiro advocates. We announced the campaign was coming, and then marked milestones with media interviews and social activity.

New Market Brand Awareness

With the fundraise complete, we then switched our attention to building the case for Hiro in respected personal finance media.  

Analysis showed UK media attention was beginning to focus on life after lockdownso we created a story warning of a potential ‘Post-pandemic Burglary Bounceback’. We crunched government data to show that house break-ins had declined by 20% across lockdown, then applied a pseudo-economic narrative to show how criminals would be looking to recoup their losses as people returned to offices and took vacations, leaving their homes empty and vulnerableThis allowed us to share advice on how to secure your home using smart tech – for example by simulating occupancy with smart lighting – whilst also benefiting from cheaper home insurance premiums with Hiro.

The Impact

Hiro established as a credible challenger on a mission

The four-month campaign has established Hiro as a credible challenger on a mission to bring innovation to the outdated insurance sector and fairer premiums to homeowners.  

It generated more than 30 pieces of coverage across insurance trade, business, tech and personal finance media. This included standout stories featured in high circulation new sites, such as MailOnline, Forbes and UKTN, contributing to a total Opportunity To See of 1.2bn. Interviews were completed with multiple media, including Forbes, TechRadar, Verdict and Insurance Age. 

The Seedrs crowdfund raise was the fastest UK insurtech raise ever, with the target hit in 14 minutes and it closed with more than £2m raised (150% of target). More than 700 investors backed Hiro. 

Hiro is now set for consumer launch, armed with a compelling narrative, persuasive proof points and a host of positive stories across featured across trusted media. 

This campaign used creative storytelling to establish Hiro as one of the UK’s most exciting insurtech challengers, on a mission to bring innovation to the outdated insurance sector and fairer premiums to homeowners.
Gareth Thomas, Managing Director, U.K. at PAN Communications, headshot
Gareth Thomas
Managing Director, UK | London, UK
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