Terrorism focus shifts to ground

With terrorism remaining high on the risk radar for many businesses operating overseas, insurers are broadening cover to include immediate on-ground response teams.

Beazley last year launched a new product, dubbed Beazley Flight, specifically aimed at helping companies evacuate staff when threatened by political violence or catastrophes.

Billed as a response and evacuation service, the cover is service-based rather than indemnity based, offering assistance on the ground, during the event, to help assist in reducing overall risk, rather than just being covered financially for loss that has occurred.

Damian Kerin, Head of Contingency Australia Beazley Insurance, says: “It’s a very specific policy to cover the service side of things for global companies that are concerned about their employees in volatile parts of the world – whether it be an act of terrorism or political violence – whereby they need to repatriate their staff members away from that harm.”

Working with three main service providers, including Northcott Global Solutions (NGS), red24 and Specialty Assist, Beazley provide emergency evacuation services, advice and assistance to businesses that have employees placed in areas exposed to dangerous circumstances.

“One of the key things that we do is build into our policy, at the beginning, key contacts to get a hold of in the event of something happening,” Kerin says.

“So, not waiting until a loss occurs, but building into our insurance contract people to contact so that there can be immediate advice surrounding the event.”

Kerin noted that businesses in Australia are mainly concerned about the financial losses of terrorist or natural disaster events, “but also are also starting to see the benefits of having service-based cover.”

“A lot if this is due to reputation,” he says.

“It’s one thing to put your business in a financial standing and be OK, but there can be some serious consequences to a business’s reputation.”