The Real Deal New York

Title insurance startup Spruce raises $15.6M

Company previously raised $4.5M in a Series A round
By Eddie Small | July 19, 2018 02:30PM

Spruce’s Cofounder Patrick Burns and COO Andrew Weisgall

Following the annulment of strict marketing regulations on title insurance firms, startup Spruce has raised $15.6 million.

The firm, which bills itself as the first digital-native title company, filed a notice with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday. Last May, Spruce raised $4.5 million in Series A funding from investors including Third Prime Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners and Omidyar Network.

The company is based in Lower Manhattan at 50 Broad Street and led by co-founders and finance entrepreneurs Patrick Burns and Andrew Weisgall. It claims to use new technology to provide cheaper and faster title insurance.

Representatives for Spruce did not respond to a request for comment.

Sources have previously told The Real Deal that the title industry, which is dominated by a handful of massive companies, is ripe for technological change. One of the few other new players to break into the industry in recent years has been Daniel Price’s OneTitle, which launched in 2014.

TRD ranked New York’s largest title insurance firms in its July issue. First American Title Insurance was at No. 1, writing policies on roughly $7.49 billion worth of sales during the 12-month period that ended on March 31, 2018. Fidelity National Title Insurance Company followed, with $4.83 billion, and Chicago Title Insurance Company took third place, with $2.7 billion.

Meanwhile, Judge Eileen Rakower recently annulled strict new anti-marking rules that the Department of Financial Services had imposed on the industry, although the state is in the process of appealing the decision.