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Aon Launches Industry's First Insurance Policy for Space Investors

07 May 2010 Aon

Aon's International Space Brokers, the largest specialist risk adviser in the sector, today announced the launch of Investment Protection Insurance, a game-changing policy for space investors. IPI is the first policy strictly for investors, and is designed to cover the loss of an investment in a space satellite, launch failure and satellite assets.

Previously, investors could not protect their financial interest due to lack of insurance capacity and first-party rights to the spacecraft. For start-up companies, which rely on the revenue generated by the early launches, the ability for the satellite to be successful is crucial. IPI is the solution, enhancing the satellite operator's initial credit rating by relieving investors of the biggest risk – failure to launch.

"Aon used its leverage with the insurance markets to introduce new capital, supporting both investors and operators by protecting their investments," said Clive Smith, space business unit leader for Aon's International Space Brokers. "As developments continue to increase for areas such as delivering broadband as well as pollution and disaster monitoring, lack of liquidity in the financial markets has delayed industry growth. IPI will restore that growth."

A claim will be triggered by any damage to or total loss of the satellite. The policy will react to fluctuations in bond yield and the share price before and after the launch or orbit. It pays an amount that recoups the loss of the publicly or privately traded securities of the satellite operating company in which the insured has invested. In the event of a loss paid, the insurers will receive the securities as salvage.

"IPI will benefit companies beyond the space industry. Aon is already looking into applications in industries with similar needs that have a technical and financial trigger, which will help avoid the product slipping into the area of financial guarantees," said Michael Hewins, chief commercial officer of Aon's International Space Brokers.

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