Risk assessment has officially gone stratospheric, with the introduction of REACT - a new insurtech platform that uses Earth Observation technology, data analytics, machine learning and geolocation, to map potential hotspots and provide vital risk scores.
Developed by the Irish space technology company, Skytek, REACT is as dynamic as it sounds, having been created by a team of astrophysicists who work on projects for NASA and SpaceX.
According to reports, the satellite-powered suite of tools draw on deep datasets and is paired with easy-to-use dashboards that allow underwriters to prepare for the future by looking simultaneously at the present and past.
The platform combines geolocation data, satellite imagery, AI and historical data so that underwriters and brokers can swiftly observe any region of the world and assess the risk factors. Risk scores can be calculated according to chosen underwriting parameters, allowing for automated portfolios and a risk dashboard that provides foresight of accumulations and a benchmark of risk appetite.
Space-age risk assessment for insurers
Skytek chief executive Dr. Sarah Bourke, explains, “REACT is uniquely powerful, putting decision-ready data at the fingertips of insurers, reinsurers and brokers when they need it, but it is also familiar and easy to use, and as a cloud-based suite with fantastic integration API’s it doesn't need to be updated or reinstalled, and can seamlessly integrate into existing technology and modeling software."
The platform provides a 360-view of business from live asset location tracking alongside Earth Observation satellite imagery, along with essential background information on static and moving assets, for marine, aerospace, energy, offshore, property, and infrastructure.
Essentially, says Bourke, REACT is a state-of-the-art technology platform providing real-time and predictive insights to supplement data modelling with ground truth facts. It has been developed to enhance the underwriting process, enabling insurers and reinsurers to manage live CAT events and future-proof organisations with ESG (Environmental Social & Governance) scoring and compliance.
Taking Earth Observation to a new level
REACT can be used across all insurance classes and with its revolutionary ability to tailor risk selection and to support underwriting decision-making, REACT is ushering the fastest possible change, but doing it with ultra-rapid evolution rather than costly and disruptive revolution.
With the growing threat of climate change making extreme weather more a frequent occurrence, insurers can stay ahead of risk by using REACT to not only track asset location but examine behaviour, such as clustering in high danger zones, and remove or adjust cover in light of risky behaviour.
The platform's combination of earth observation imagery and AIS data, and access to key underlying information including utilisation, maintenance, registry, ownership, and historical data, provides a powerful set of tools for protecting insurers from foreseeable losses.
Tracking climatic changes and risk
In terms of risk assessment for weather crisis, the past two years have been turbulent, from the wildfires in Australia and California to the recent floods - again in Australia and more unusually across Europe. But Earth Observation is useful for more than disastrous weather events.
For example, REACT was the first platform to provide vital images of the Port of Beirut explosion, and also ran imagery on the recent Suez Canal disaster when the Ever Given container ship ran aground.
While no software suite can prevent suchevents from occurring, REACT is unique in its ability to observe locations and facilitate pre-and post-event using machine learning to analyse earth observation image comparisons. It enables insurers to see the true extent of damage and understand the timeline of events in the run-up. This pre-and post-event functionality can drive accurate and rapid loss assessment and identify breaches of coverage.
With Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) issues topping both the corporate and public agendas, REACT allows users to maintain and adapt with compliance needs at a high level to understand the impact of events. These range from potential or immediate environmental damage to on the ground insights including excess fuel use and emissions following potential rerouting.
A game-changer in terms of risk assessment
“REACT is a true game-changer. The perfect solution where technology supports and enhances the role of the insurer to add value, identify opportunities, and ultimately improve profitability and growth,” says Christian Silies, Head of Marine, Energy, Composite at Aon Reinsurance Solutions at Aon.
He points out that REACT allows insurers and brokers to accurately manage underwriting and claims as well as expand their business by new products and differentiate themselves from competitors with value-added services and insights.
Bourke, explains, “With historic and predictive data REACT is the modern scalable solution, providing insurers with the hindsight, full sight, and foresight to deliver smarter, faster decisions.
"In this new digital era technology will have a major influence on the future success of insurance however this is not about drastic disruption and change this is about a natural evolution of continual improvement where technology supports and enhances decision making not replaces the value and insight of industry professionals."
She adds, "The new era of the ‘digital insurer’ is already upon us; it's now down to industry leaders and early adopters to create real differentiation and in turn, improve profit and growth”