Closure relieves next of kin by ending subscriptions after death

1 December 2022 9:00

A phone subscription, an energy contract, an Instagram account: in our current ‘subscription culture’, people have an average of 30 ongoing contracts, subscriptions and profiles. Ending all these subscriptions after someone passes away is a huge job for bereaved families. In 2017, Rotterdam-based entrepreneur Graciëlla van Vliet founded Closure. A termination service for next of kin.

Care for the bereaved

When a loved one passes away, a lot falls on the next of kin. One of the things they are left with is cancelling all of the deceased's subscriptions and contracts. From bank accounts and energy contracts to charities and social media: cancelling everything is a time-consuming task. Closure unburdens next of kin by acting as a single point of contact between heirs and organizations.

After a death, heirs make a death notification to a Closure partner. This can be the funeral home offering Closure's service, or an organization such as the deceased's bank or telecom provider. At the end of the death notification, the next of kin selects which organizations and subscriptions should be cancelled or transferred. Closure then executes the requests (automatically). Next of kin are kept informed of progress via their own account and via a weekly e-mail and can add organizations at any time. This allows them to focus on what really matters: grieving.

Organizations are also unburdened

Closure not only relieves next of kin, organizations also experience great convenience from the Rotterdam-based scale-up's self-learning software. Large organizations often receive more than a hundred death notifications a day through a so-called ‘next-of-kin’ desk. Closure's machine-learning software makes it possible to process these requests faster and faster. The software developed by Closure itself can automatically fill out web forms and extract information from documents, greatly reducing the need for phone calls and emails. The software also recognizes when a party requests an additional document, or when a particular person is not found in the system. The service can accommodate various preferences of next of kin such as temporarily retaining a deceased person's mobile number, or creating a Facebook memorial page.

Closure now works with more than two hundred funeral directors and numerous subscription providers including OV-Chipkaart, T-Mobile and Knab. Now that Closure has been licensed by the Financial Markets Authority to also terminate or transfer contracts from financial institutions, this number will only continue to grow.

Ready to conquer the world

Closure has ambitions to grow internationally. Meanwhile, the first steps have been taken in Belgium, where a major bank is the launching customer. France, Germany and even the United States are high on the Rotterdam-based tech company's wish list. In addition to the next of kin service, Closure would like to expand its services with new products. After all, marriage, divorce or new studies are also examples of life-changing issues that call for contracts to be set up or transferred.

Because Closure's services fit well with the social issues Rabobank considers important, the bank was involved at an early stage. In 2018, Closure received a Rabo pre-seed loan from the Utrecht Inc program and in 2020 a Rabo Innovation loan. With this, Rabobank contributed significantly to the development of this innovative start-up's platform. For further scaling up, capital was raised from Venture Capital investor Borski Fund, a fund that invests in women entrepreneurs, supplemented by an Innovative Guarantee loan from Rabobank. Start-up & scale-up Banker Thijs Reiling says: "We want to be committed to innovations that boost people's financial well-being. Because of the innovative strength and mission-driven approach of the team, we are now also supporting them in the next steps of growth. We see opportunities for Closure to increase their impact both in the Netherlands and across the border.”

Find out which funding fits your business

Closure is a great example of how Rabobank has a distinctive proposition in supporting start-ups and scale-ups in different stages of life. Does your startup or scale-up also need financing? Rabobank offers various financing products and innovation funds for sustainable growth in every stage of development.