Descartes Underwriting, the leading parametric-specialized provider of corporate insurance against Nat Cat and climate risks forms partnership with Reask, a tropical-cyclone risk analytics firm. The partnership aims to galvanize the availability and advancement of parametric cyclone insurance products by combining Descartes’ ability to incorporate state-of-the-art technology into its parametric product design, with Reask’s cutting-edge wind speed data.
Named wind storms pose a major threat to businesses, communities and public entities in coastal megacities, deltas, and islands. For example, in the last year alone, cyclone-driven economic loss is estimated to have reached $78 billion USD worldwide, with 68% of losses ($53 billion USD) not covered by insurance. Even in the more established North American market, Hurricane Ida, which carried an economic impact of an estimated $95 billion USD, illustrates the windstorm coverage gap, with only $30 billion USD or 32% of losses insured.
Crucially, this partnership also seeks to address the insurance protection gap by expanding global cyclone parametric coverage. The consistent global coverage of Reask’s tropical cyclone product, Metryc, enables the expansion of parametric insurance policies into regions and geographies where data limitations impeded previous coverage. Furthermore, Reask’s ability to augment scarcely available ground-level observations and deliver high-resolution wind hazard intensity metrics within days following an event greatly supports the deployment of Descartes’ parametric products.
Descartes Underwriting has worked in collaboration with Generali Global Corporate & Commercial since 2020 to improve corporate uptake of parametric risk transfer solutions globally.
As Nat Cat & extreme weather risks evolve due to climate change, the inherent difficulties in obtaining accurate data due to the destructive nature of cyclone activity are also likely to be accentuated. The partnership between Descartes Underwriting and Reask addresses these challenges as the scientific teams at both organizations collaborate and nimbly apply machine learning to improve tropical cyclone wind field and terrain interaction models.
Kevin Dedieu, Co-founder & Head of R&D at Descartes Underwriting:
“Data dearth in certain regions remains a gating factor to providing parametric insurance covers that enhance resilience. Reask leads the charge in its ability to quickly capture a windstorm event or provide wind at location maps in certain areas, such as the South Pacific, where data is less accessible,” stated Kevin Dedieu. In framing the impact of having reliable observations, he continued: “Precise, high quality data is a prerequisite to all parametric insurance structures. Wind-at-location data, such as that provided by Reask, amplifies customization and reduces basis risk in game changing ways that serve to benefit parametric insurance providers, brokers, reinsurers, and risk managers for public entities and private sector clients worldwide.”
Thomas Loridan, Co-founder and CEO at Reask: “Our Metryc solution enables the transfer of financial risk in all corners of the globe, expanding the reach of parametric insurance solutions such as those provided by Descartes Underwriting” stated Thomas Loridan. Regarding the strength of the Metryc product, he added: “It is thanks to our machine learning approach to wind modelling that Metryc can be used as a reliable third-party view of tropical cyclone wind speed data even in regions where observations are scarce.”
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