• Pineapple insurance peer-to-peer Logo Large

    The Pineapple Story!

    The Pineapple story starts in a small office in Rosebank, Johannesburg.

  • The Pineapplers

    Meet our team:

    Ndabenhle Junior Ngulube portrait

    The Bug Baron

    Ndabenhle Junior Ngulube

    BCom - Accounting, Tax (hons)

    "I trust you have had a productive week thus far"

    Angelique Scott portrait

    Queen CodesAlot

    Angelique Scott

    Information Systems and Development

    "Yes, the daemon is running!"

    Matthew Elan Smith portrait

    Warden of the North

    Matthew Elan Smith

    BSC - Actuarial Sci ; Statistics


    "What if we were to ...."

    Marnus van Heerden portrait

    The Zo

    Lorenzo Spazzoli

    BSC - CompSci


    "Never tickle a sleeping dragon"

    Sizwe Ndlovu Portrait

    Merge Lord

    Sizwe Ndlovu

    BSC - CompSci


    "Nah B."

    Marnus van Heerden portrait

    Don Corleone

    Marnus van Heerden

    BAcc LLB (hons Acc)

    "The best way to describe what we see wrong in the insurance industry is through a Game Theory experiment:


    In this experiment there are 10 participants who are each asked to anonymously contribute R10 into a pot.
    The administrator will then double the pot and distribute the proceeds evenly.


    The first round everyone contributes, R100 in the pot is doubled to R200 and each participants gets R20, making a R10 profit. This carries on for a few rounds until one participant realizes he can game the system.


    He decides to put no money in leaving R90 in the pot which doubles to R180, each participants now only makes an R8 profit except the cheater who makes an R18 profit.


    At this point alarm bells start ringing and gradually every participant stops putting money in as they feel if someone is cheating why should they not.

    A system which was profitable for everyone was ruined by a lack of transparency and affinity."

  • Pineapple Story


    The Pineapple founding team (Matthew Elan Smith, Ndabenhle Junior Ngulube and Marnus van Heerden) got together as part of an innovation competition run by Hannover-Re, during 2016, in an effort to find disruptive models to the reinsurance/insurance space. The competition ran for 6 months and it was out of our little innovation spot in Rosebank, Johannesburg where the Pineapple story begins.

    During the competition we went through a process called Design Thinking - A Silicon Valley framework for stimulating innovation.

    It was out of our "Dark horse" phase of design thinking that the seeds of what would become Pineapple were planted (pun intended).


    The team was fortunate enough to be coached by two brilliant minds in Business, Insurance and Entrepreneurship - Achim Klennert (CEO - Hannover-Re Africa) and Wayne Wheatley (Founder of ParrotSA). From coach to mentor - both Achim and Wayne continue to play a vital role in Pineapple's strategic direction.

    The Seeds of a Pineapple

    Design thinking is all about putting the user at the center of your thinking, upon doing this with insurance in mind we noticed a few things:

    • Consumers and insurers don't trust each-other
    • This mistrust leads to fraud and this fraud leads to further mistrust - and there is no mechanism to address this
    • There is a conflict of interest in the way insurance is done - Those approving claims stand to profit by denying them,
    • Insurance is expensive and provides very little value for the purchase - estimated at R36 for every R100
    • Fraud, heavy expenses and large profit margins are responsible for destroying value
    We set out to reinvent the way insurance is done with an entirely new business model that aims to achieve affinity, fairness and simplicity to decrease costs, cap profits and deter fraud in an effort to create more value from an insurance policy than the traditional model. The Pineapple model has its roots in what is a traditional South African Stokvel, developed further to be decentralised, digital and completely scalable.


    After presenting what would become Pineapple in Germany at the end of 2016 the team worked through the first half of 2017 to refine the business model and lay all the technical and regulatory groundwork to take Pineapple from concept to reality.

    A Fruitful Future for Insurance

    In August of 2017 we started development of the systems and secured our seed funding not long thereafter. Things kicked into another gear from there on and we went full steam ahead along with our partners at Compass and Brolink to get our first product sorted and ready the Pineapple application for launch.


    It's bound to be a wild ride ahead for us and we are looking forward to every moment of it!