Underwriting

Whilst driving our technical underwriting through an unprecedented crisis in a pragmatic way, we continue to develop our commercial relationships and to target several lead accounts, with the help of our strengthened teams.

The air transport industry is currently facing the worst crisis ever: passenger numbers are down by more than 60 % and nearly a quarter of the world’s aircraft fleet remains on the ground. Apart from a few exceptions, the whole value chain is impacted: manufacturers and airports see a double-digit drop in their activity alike.

In the face of the crisis which is hitting our insureds particularly hard, REUNION AERIENNE & SPATIALE adapted its underwriting swiftly.

First of all, we responded positively to the requests for extension of payment deadlines and for premium instalments. Then, we anticipated their adjustment, in proportion to the parameter changes, as provided for by the contracts in the vast majority of cases.

Whilst readjusting our business plan, we enhanced our underwriting discipline accordingly, in particular, our risk analysis methods and our pricing tools; again with the goal of returning to profitability in 2021 like all the other players in the market.

According to one of our ” 10 commandments ” for underwriting, we use systematically the pricing models developed with the help of our actuaries going forward. For the Airlines segment, for instance, we take into account each insured’s frequency claims along with an allocation of the large market claims in proportion to the limits and/or exposures. We are also finalizing our models for the aerospace and general aviation businesses.

In addition, we have started using a qualitative as well as a quantitative scoring method to determine our maximum share.

Our aviation risk analysis also benefits from the introduction of our « business intelligence », which cross-references our internal data with industry data, building upon a proven track record in our space business.

In the same context, we review the limits, the scope or the restrictions of cover on a systematic basis, especially those related to groundings, financial losses, as well as cyber and pandemic risks.

Finally, whilst driving our technical underwriting through the Covid-19 crisis in a pragmatic way, we continue to develop commercial relationships and to target several lead accounts, with a renewed quality of service, thanks to the unwavering engagement of our strengthened teams.

Jean-Claude GÈZE
Chief Underwriting Officer

Jean-Claude GÈZE, Chief Underwriting Officer
jean-claude.geze@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814669

Judith GURVIEZ, Compliance & Internal Control
judith.gurviez@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814612

Florence GREMEAUX, Manager Personal Assistant
florence.gremeaux@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814632

Our Capacity Our Shares
Airlines

$300 M USD

Major Risks

Up to 13%

Major Airlines

$250 M USD

mid-size Risks

Up to 20%

MId-Size Airlines
Aerospace

$250 M USD

 

Up to 10%

Major
Manufacturers

Up to 100%

Suppliers And
Subcontractors

Up to 30%

Mid-size Manufacturers
and airports
General Aviation

$150 M USD

Up to 100%

Our Capacity

$30 M USD

Per Launch / satellite

$10 M USD

Orbit Life

REUNION AERIENNE & SPATIALE writes business on behalf of its principals in most countries and territories subject to local laws and regulations, in accordance with country specific sanctions.

Business Development

Whereas we have led business in the market for many years, increased leadership is an initiative that has been developed for 2020 and beyond and with some positive results during the year already.

At LA REUNION AERIENNE we feel that it is important to offer our brokers and clients alike access to underwriting solutions from both the Paris and London platforms. To this end, we have added even more capability and experience in hiring new individuals in our London office.

We are full members of the International Underwriting Association in London. We also have a prominent position with the International Union of Aviation Insurers to participate in and influence market forums in our position as a significant organisation within the Aviation underwriting community.

From these platforms we are more than ever a powerful voice in the market when issues arise, solutions are required, and opinions sought for the functioning of the marketplace to the ultimate benefit of all parties.

Whilst we have led business in the market for many years, increased leadership is an initiative that has been developed for 2020 and beyond and with some positive results during the year already. Whilst this is clearly a positive development for our lead clients, it also further cements our position and influence as one of the top underwriting companies in the global aviation market. It is our intention to partner with a select number of airline clients and other aviation entities to build close and longstanding relationships as leader of their aviation policies. And should the need arise, our extensive and highly experienced claims teamwork in conjunction with our clients and their brokers to provide the expertise required in handling claims that may be incurred whether in the normal operating environment or in the most complex scenarios that can occur. LRA has been in partnership with stakeholders and operating in the aviation market for over 65 years and it is important to develop and adapt during the many different market dynamics, always providing support for our trading partners – even in the most challenging conditions such as are currently being experienced. This latest mission at LRA underlines our commitment to an increased and sustained underwriting proposition for 2021 and beyond.
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Malcolm Brett
Chief Business Development Officer

Airlines

In our role as underwriters of Airlines risks, we aspire to be part of the new Aviation Safety paradigm. As such, we continue to develop tools to measure and to assess the known or emerging risks in order to anticipate an unparalleled restart of the airline industry.

2021 stands for a change of paradigm in the Airlines market. 2020 was to bring us a basis to restore our fundamentals and build back our capacity to respond to client needs as well as the confidence of our shareholders/principals in our market. Instead, a once in a lifetime event has severely impacted the world and most of our airlines’ clients. We believe that facing a major challenge might also be an opportunity to reinvent us and to become stronger and sharper in order to take advantage of the new incoming cycle.

The airline industry has to rebuild its capabilities and the financial consequences once the subsidies cease are yet to be assessed. Additionally, since such a disaster was not anticipated, issues arising from it such as ground accumulation, increases in airline incident frequency, crew skills proficiency issues as well as aircraft valuation and maintenance problems in these particular conditions.

In 2020, LRA has made the best use of the lockdown in building new tools to pursue our everlasting efforts to perform.

We have launched an innovative “pricing tool”, which values our product by using either the claims experience of a given Insured or the required premium based on exposures and contribution to the funding of claims. This tool further enhances our measurement of the risk.

In addition, it allows us more time to take a macro view to better anticipate, through a reinforced aviation culture, the trends we are perceiving in the Insured’s statistics, whilst analysing their data or meeting with them at their station/facilities (hopefully in 2021!)

We are also implementing a system that maximizes the use of our capacity and optimises our share. It combines quantitative (claims frequency and severity) and qualitative (risk assessment) criteria.

Lastly, we continue to develop our integrated business intelligence system using “big data” and merging our data with external media. This allows us to track down risk location and accumulation, risk planning, etc.

We will then be part of the new Aviation Safety paradigm, being more pro-active rather than reactive even if, ultimately, predictability seems to be the unreachable new frontier, at least for now.

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Yann BISSUEL
Chief Airlines Underwriter

Yann BISSUEL, Chief Airlines Underwriter
yann.bissuel@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814620

Florian ANGIUS, Airlines Underwriter
florian.angius@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814640

Ludovic BERLIOUX, Airlines Senior Underwriter
ludovic.berlioux@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814635

Christopher HESKETH, Airlines Senior Underwriter
christopher.hesketh@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+44 7496 572721

Fabrice LAURENT, Airlines Senior Underwriter
fabrice.laurent@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814616

Julie MENET, Airlines Underwriter
julie.menet@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814673

Chloé THOMAS, Airlines Underwriter
chloe.thomas@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814702

Annick PETIT, Airlines Underwriting Assistant
annick.petit@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814684

Camille CRISSIN, Airlines Underwriting Assistant
camille.crissin@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+44 (0)7388 825238

Aerospace

LRA, with its experience and ability, is confident to move into 2021 with enthusiasm, empathy and strong underwriting to maintain relevance to our aerospace clients with attractive and efficient breadth of coverage and cost, while at the same time remaining profitable.

Unprecedented was the word of 2020 with almost every situation bringing the market unforeseen and unexpected challenges.

However, what wasn’t new was an underperforming market and premium inadequacy for the claims being paid. The aviation market had begun to move slowly upwards with the well-used excuse that a seismic shift would attract an influx of capacity and destroy the market dynamics. The losses though keep coming and the move towards profitability will require increased momentum.

Our clients meanwhile are suffering due to the Pandemic but (with a few exceptions) still manage to deliver profitability to their shareholders which is a privilege that underwriters have rarely managed in recent years.

The quantitative value of claims is a concern too with the 2018 underwriting year delivering to Aerospace underwriters loss ratios far in excess of anything seen before. Due to the long-tail nature of our product, underwriters are often seeing a deterioration in older years which exceeds the current annual premium. The situation is becoming (or is already) critical.

Underwriters have responded to clients’ plea for differentiation and everyone is judged on their own merits but within the premium calculation, the market participation allocation seems to have been missed. The well-worn statement that the losses of the few are paid for by the many remains a core principle but when Underwriters reach for that sum, the cupboard is bare.

With a number of our large clients being well capitalised the challenge for underwriters is to maintain relevance to those entities who could easily absorb our product into their captives. The breadth of coverage and cost has to be attractive and economically efficient- which it clearly is at present as these companies are still buying traditional insurance.

The simple response is to charge more premium, but the answer for our major clients may be to restructure the placement and provide coverage that is more cost-effective than keeping it “in house” and will provide profitability to underwriters.

The challenges have been set by capital providers, brokers and clients and with the experience and ability that LRA has brought to the market over many years, we are confident that we will move into 2021 with enthusiasm, empathy and strong underwriting which will contribute to a brighter future.

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Graham Daldry
Chief Aerospace Underwriter

Graham DALDRY, Chief Aerospace Underwriter
graham.daldry@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+44 75 38 94 42 22

Edouard MERLET, Aerospace Portfolio Manager
edouard.merlet@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814639

Audrey CHARBIT, Aerospace Underwriter
audrey.charbit@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814655

Mike FREEMAN, Aerospace Underwriter
michael.freeman@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+44 207 265 6246

Sandrine OSSELIN, Aerospace Underwriter
sandrine.osselin@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814637

Christelle BECMEUR, Aerospace Underwriting Assistant
christelle.becmeur@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814619

General Aviation

The year 2020 reflects a return to underwriting discipline against the background of an unexpected crisis during which LRA did not hesitate to deliver extra support to its general aviation clients.

2020 has been an unusual year in several respects. In the general aviation segment, as in the other lines of business, prices have continued to rise since the onset of the momentum in 2019, often associated with a reduction of insurers’ engagements. This reflects a return to underwriting discipline and a more moderate risk exposure. However, the unexpected outbreak of Covid-19 and the restrictions it caused, disrupted the general aviation sector.

Due to the travelling ban related to Covid-19, the general aviation market experienced a relative fall in the number of hours flown. However, contrary to what one might think, the claims decrease was not proportional. For instance, at least 3 mid-air collisions took place in France this year – which are quite rare events under normal circumstances leading to dramatic consequences.

The general aviation market is probably the one that was better positioned to navigate the storm in 2020. Although the sales of new aircraft were not flourishing, the players in the sector managed to adapt themselves despite the impacts of the crisis. For example, in responding in an agile way to requests for medical repatriation or in providing firms with alternative solutions in geographies where airline companies were forced to cancel flights.

Regarding the helicopter segment, the substantial premium increase, which started in 2019 and gained momentum in 2020, goes in the right direction. Even if the premium level remains insufficient to support the sector’s claims experience, LRA will maintain its risk selection and will only participate in this segment if premium budgets are consistent with the risks covered.

As far as the professional drone users’ segment is concerned, LRA is already well-positioned and will continue to support the sector’s boom in increasing preferred partnerships with its specialized intermediaries.

Generally speaking, LRA, in its role as a general aviation underwriting agency for more than 65 years and leader in its domestic market, will continue to stand by its numerous partners of different cultures, whether they are agents with a developed national network such as Generali and MMA, brokers specialized in aeronautics or non-specialist intermediaries keen to provide their clients with a global solution.

As such, LRA has been the first player in the market to grant a specific Covid-19 premium discount to its clients holding non-adjustable policies, in order to support them during this very particular year.

LRA also took advantage of this year to hire a senior international underwriter and strengthen its teams in Paris and London. Therefore, our clients and brokers can rely on a highly experienced underwriting team, allowing LRA to deploy its know-how in general aviation in France but also globally.

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Christophe Kleider General Aviation Portfolio Manager

Christophe KLEIDER, General Aviation Portfolio Manager
christophe.kleider@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814625

Norbert BOULLAY, General Aviation Underwriter
norbert.boullay@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814627

Patrick GRISON, General Aviation Underwriter
patrick.grison@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814633

Clément SAUVAGET, General Aviation Underwriter
clement.sauvaget@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814638

Clara STROM, General Aviation Underwriter
clara.strom@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814647

Marie VILLAR, General Aviation Underwriter
marie.villar@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814707

Carole FILOCHE, General Aviation Underwriting Assistant
carole.filoche@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814666

Space

The space insurance market continues to harden in a resilient space industry ecosystem where LRS further develops its partnerships.

The Covid-19 crisis did not have a strong impact on the space industry. However, several launches had to be postponed due to the sanitary measures implemented on the launch sites but also at the satellite manufacturers. These time-lags do have an impact on the space insurance market, leading to a carry forward of a portion of the premium estimated for 2020 into 2021. The market premium level for 2020, below 500 million dollars, is exceptionally low, for two reasons:
  • the reduced launch activity, mainly as a consequence of the sanitary crisis
  • and the placing conditions negotiated in a bear market.
Following the claims of 2019, exceeding 900 million dollars for the market on an underwriting year basis, LA REUNION SPATIALE (and the market) have been able to react and adjust their rates for the launch as well as orbit life risks, to a level which is far more satisfactory: indeed, the market premium for orbit life risks more than doubled between 2018 and 2020, whereas for launch risks, the effects are deferred and will become visible as from 2021. As to the portfolio mix, we are facing an evolution of the insured space missions. In the telecommunications domain, HTS satellites (high throughput) and constellation projects are changing drastically the traditional mission landscape. However, new missions appear as well, servicing in orbit missions are already a reality and space tourism projects are emerging. To summarize, despite reduced activity in 2020 and still in a highly volatile context, the technical results of LA REUNION SPATIALE outperformed the market and our very efficient cost structure allows us to report a combined ratio that is substantially lower than the market. Finally, we have the advantage to own a large database enabling our underwriting decisions and we value our relationship with our preferred partners, as we are convinced that our engagement in space risks can only be long term.
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Edouard Merlet
HEAD OF SPACE

Edouard MERLET, Head of Space Business
edouard.merlet@la-reunion-spatiale.com
+33 (0)187814639

Christian BUQUET, Business Administrative Handler
christian.buquet@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814657

Laurent MALMON, Business Administrative Handler
laurent.malmon@la-reunion-aerienne.com
+33 (0)187814658