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Founding CTO / Head of Engineering, New Insurtech Venture



Software Engineering
Toronto, ON, Canada
Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Founding CTO / Head of Engineering, New Insurtech Venture

Canada / US Remote

The Opportunity.

Koru’s venture studio is incubating an exciting startup that plans to modernize the insurance industry and unlock the InsurTech space with seamless connectivity and open data sharing that was previously impossible.

Today, insurance data is siloed and fragmented - resulting in operational inefficiencies, less than ideal customer experiences, and lack of innovation. We’re launching a new insurance platform that will revolutionize access to insurance data via a single, unified API with the goal of enabling the entire insurance ecosystem to build better, more personalized insurance products and customer experiences.

We have an experienced Entrepreneur-in-Residence (CEO) looking for a Technical Co-Founder (CTO) to join this journey. As part of our studio, this venture has a Koru incubation team spanning product, tech, design, operations and GTM working on building the first version of the platform, armed with research, data, some early market validation, a first customer, and a robust pipeline of potential partners.

About Koru.

Koru is a first of its kind venture studio and early-stage investor funded by Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, a $200B+ Canadian investor with portfolio companies around the world — giving us access to innovate across dozens of different industries on a global scale. Koru partners with OTPP portfolio companies to build businesses with a clear right to win. We build and invest in ventures from 0-1 that address customer frictions head-on — and we leverage our corporate partnerships to gain unfair advantages in the market.

Please note: This is not an employee opportunity at Koru, but an opportunity to be a co-founder of a new company created through our venture studio model. This company will be independent of Koru.

As Co-Founder & CTO, you will:

  • Be engineering hire #1 and work closely with Koru’s talented product, design, business, and growth teams during incubation
  • Work closely with the CEO and Investors/Board to align on strategic priorities
  • Own technical architecture and development with full accountability for the design, implementation, and evolution of technical systems. You’ll be responsible for ensuring we are building the right thing, at the right time, in the right way
  • Make strategic decisions around speed to market vs scalability and long term vision of the architecture/systems/design
  • Own the selection of technologies, architecture design, and engagement with vendors
  • Own the development roadmap, define and track development KPIs and manage overall product development budget
  • Lead the technical team and help hire the best talent, as we transition from Koru to the venture’s own full-time team.
  • Champion agile practices that provide a foundation for iterative product development in response to key insights from customer validation and market/team feedback
  • Be scrappy! In the early days, the founding team will be small and cross functional; this means you’ll need to be able to jump between the strategic and the executional on a regular basis.
  • Participate in code reviews, write code and design solutions alongside your development team as needed.
  • Build a strong team culture that emphasizes best-in-class software qualities including testability, security, scalability, operability, etc.
  • Enjoy working in a diverse, dynamic, collaborative, transparent, environment where everyone's ideas and opinions are equally valued.

You should:

  • Be ready to take risks and build something from the ground up.
  • Have a high degree of comfort with the levels of ambiguity and the pace of building an early stage startup.
  • Have 10+ years of hands-on experience in technology development.
  • Be an exceptional people leader with 7+ years hands-on leadership of engineering talent.
  • Have experience working across platforms & technologies, such as web and mobile apps, SaaS, big data and/or AI and ML powered platforms.
  • Be a polyglot! Recent hands-on development and delivery experience with a broad mix of coding languages & platforms, such as (but not exclusively): python, node, javascript, AWS stack, API integrations, etc.
  • Have experience with architectural design while leading and inspiring engineering teams.
  • Strong leadership and communication skills that contribute to an open and collaborative environment.
  • A proven track record in managing remote and third-party teams across geographies and time zones as needed, ensuring the team is highly motivated and maintaining high productivity.
  • Have experience working with agile, lean and continuous delivery approaches.
  • An ability to embrace and reduce uncertainty through continual validated learning.
  • A real passion for solving customer frictions through simple and effective software.
  • The ability to regularly travel, including to Koru’s headquarters in Toronto, Canada.

It would be ideal if you have:

  • Experience working on Business-to-Developer products and API development, or Integration Marketplace experience, understanding what makes a great “developer experience”
  • Experience in building completely new products from 0-1, and bringing them to market
  • Previous experience founding a company or as a first technical hire in a new startup
  • Experience building a team and technology from scratch through to some level of success (i.e. more than just a side hustle)
  • Bonus: Experience in product management, product design or entrepreneurship

As Co-Founder and CTO, you’ll get:

  • To work alongside an experienced and passionate co-founder
  • The support of Koru’s venture studio during incubation and beyond
  • A salary from day 1 to cover expenses until a Seed round is raised
  • Significant founder equity
  • An opportunity to be part of something big that has the potential to transform the insurance industry
  • A remote-first working culture

This venture will be headquartered in the UK and will have a fully remote/global team, but will require travel to Toronto, Canada to work alongside the Koru team during Incubation and to support Canadian market growth leading up to a Seed funding round.

Koru’s commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Diversity of perspectives and experience is at the core of how we approach disruption and innovation. We believe in fostering an environment where team members of all backgrounds can feel comfortable bringing their whole selves to work every day. We aim to ensure all of our employees work in an environment that makes them feel valued, heard and supported while they strive towards career pursuits and their personal and professional growth.

We are committed to providing accommodations for all candidates that require them and in all aspects of the recruitment, selection, and/or assessment process. If you are selected to participate in any part of the selection and/or assessment process, please inform us of any accommodation(s) that you may require.

Koru’s location.

Our offices are located in downtown Toronto. We humbly acknowledge that Koru HQ is located on land that is the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the New Credit, Chippewa (Anishinaabeg), Haudenosaunee, and Wendat. This territory is covered by the ‘Toronto Purchase: Treaty 13’ which was the surrender of the lands from the Mississaugas of the Credit to the British Crown initially in 1787.

Koru staff and/or board members are made up of settlers, immigrants, descendants of immigrants, or a combination thereof. Our roots lie in continents across the world and we are grateful for the opportunity to share this land where we work and live.