Bauer enters partnership to launch car insurance company

Mariam Cheik-Hussein
By Mariam Cheik-Hussein | 28 July 2020

Bauer Media has entered a partnership to launch Stella, an insurance company focused on catering to the female market.

The new venture, underwritten by QBE and in partnership with Bauer, Freedom Group, Viper Capital and Envest, will compete for a slice of the $10.5 billion automotive insurance market.

The publishing house, recently purchased by Mercury Capital, launched Stella after its research found many of the 4.5 million Australian women aged 25-64 with comprehensive car insurance often don’t understand their insurance policy. Women are also statistically safer drivers than men and make the majority of household purchasing decisions.

Bauer, drawing on its commercial content and insights division Story54, is providing full marketing services including research, talent sourcing, creative, media and communications strategy and execution.

“Women are often overlooked when it comes to the marketing of car insurance, but with our portfolio of brands across food, fashion, entertainment and lifestyle and homes, and the ability to reach almost six in ten Australian women every month, Bauer is well placed to address this imbalance,” says Jane Waterhouse, general manager at Story54.

“Stella was created to uniquely offer car insurance for women by women.

“We were able to apply our deep understanding of women to form a product and campaign that breaks category stereotypes. As a challenger brand, we have lifted what is a typically male-focused and unexciting category with a touch of humour and strong female talent.”

Comedian and former Triple J radio host Gen Fricker is the spokesperson for the Stella brand. Fricker will appear in a campaign that includes a video series and editorial content running across Bauer Media’s portfolio of brands and print, digital display and social media advertising.

Freedom Group, one of the parties backing Stella, founder Sam White is well-known as an instigator of change in the UK’s financial services industry and for her active promotion of women and diversity in the sector.

“I’m beyond delighted that Stella is now live,” White says.

“It’s long been a frustration for me that in the UK I’m not able to appropriately reward women for their better driving abilities (due to the EU directive on gender discrimination in insurance), so the opportunity to launch a female centric insurtech in Australia has been the realisation of a long term passion. We really want to change the game in insurance in a number of different ways.”

As part of the collaboration, Stella is offering every new policy holder a free 12-month magazine subscription to one Bauer publication.

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