Not all investment companies would fund a potential competitor to their core businesses, but this is exactly what Yellowwoods has done by taking 15% of insurtech firm Simply.Yellowwoods is the secretive SA holding company of the Enthoven family. Its main interests are Hollard, with about R24bn in premium income across short-and long-term insurance licences, and Clientèle, a highly profitable but niche life office with R2.1bn in premium income. Neither has been a slouch when it comes to innovation — Clientèle, in particular, was an innovator in the direct-to-consumer market through its cheesy but effective TV infomercials.But the Enthovens are always looking to the next generation.The founder of the dynasty, Robert, made his name in insurance broking. His son Patrick moved into underwriting when Hollard was formed in 1980. And more recently the family have moved outside their insurance comfort zone by financing Nando’s, run by Robby Enthoven in the UK — which has been highly profitab...

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