Colorado tech startup Elevate launches with $15M in funding to revolutionized employee benefits
Consumer-directed benefits are pre-tax benefit plans designed to give American workers more control over their earned income and save money on everyday out-of-pocket expenses. The consumer-directed benefits are offered by 95% of American companies and used by 95 million American employees, according to a report from Employers Council on Flexible Compensation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advocacy, education, advancement.
Even with the availability of these benefits, unfortunately, most consumer-directed benefit user experiences and platforms are trapped in antiquity. Shareholder pressure has produced a decade of industry acquisitions and roll-ups. As a byproduct, legacy providers are saddled with runaway headcount, disjointed platforms, and tech debt, while user experience has taken a back seat.
Enter Elevate, a Denver, Colorado-based tech startup that’s on a mission to revolutionized employee benefits. Elevate makes life easier for employers and employees by bringing innovation, simplicity, and security to consumer-directed benefits.
Today, Elevate announced it has emerged from a year in stealth with $12 million in Series A funding to modernize consumer-directed benefits delivery. The round was co-led by Greycroft and Norwest Venture Partners, with participation from existing investor Bowery Capital. The round, which brings Elevate’s total raise to $15 million, will be used to reimagine how employers and employees access, manage and experience consumer-directed benefits.
Founded in 2020 by former Businessolver executive Brian Cosgray and former ConnectYourCare founder Brian Strom, Elevate takes a revolutionary approach to how employers and employees access, manage and experience consumer-directed benefits. The startup enables employees to easily view, plan and manage their pre-tax benefits from a single intuitive dashboard, whether on the web or mobile.
All benefits can be accessed and delivered through one contactless card. Claims are processed instantly and reimbursement takes place within minutes. With half of Americans enrolled in high-deductible healthcare plans and 21% of working-age Americans underinsured, consumer-directed benefits programs also help offset rising healthcare costs shouldered by employers and employees.
CEO Cosgray said that “if one-third of American employees use one or more employer-sponsored consumer-directed benefits, imagine what utilization would look like if we modernized the experience for both employees and employers.”
“Brian and the team at Elevate are among the first to bring forward a modernized replacement for the old benefit tech stack,” said Ellie Wheeler, Partner, Greycroft. “Modern, API-driven providers whose solutions can communicate with each other to deliver an easy to use experience for the employer and employee will become the default in benefits this decade. We’re thrilled to back a team of Elevate’s caliber and look forward to helping scale adoption.”
“As an early Wageworks employee, I saw how version 1.0 consumer-directed benefit platforms were really just online versions of the same paper-based process that existed pre-internet, which was always a frustrating experience for employees,” said Sean Jacobsohn, Partner, Norwest Venture Partners. “Since becoming a venture capitalist, I had been looking for a team who could modernize the experience. When I met Brian and Brian and heard their vision combined with their experience and team, I knew the opportunity for Elevate to reshape the industry was enormous.”
With Elevate, employees can easily view, plan and manage their pre-tax benefits from a single intuitive dashboard, whether on the web or mobile. All benefits can be accessed and delivered through one contactless card. Claims are processed instantly and reimbursement takes place within minutes.