Rokstone Explores Global Terrorism

Speaking to Aventum’s marketing director Matt Field, Rebecca explained that a terrorist event can have a devastating effect on any kind of business, and that it’s not just those at the centre of an attack that will experience losses.

She gave the example of the London Bridge terrorist attack in June 2017, which resulted in heavy losses for the many businesses around Borough Market, due to the assailant running into the area, and police subsequently shutting it down for 12-13 days.

“That was the non-damage BI aspect,” she explained. “What happened is that while there was no physical damage, the traders couldn’t open.

“June is a prime time of year, with tourists, visitors and everything, and the traders in that area lost around £1.5m of earnings. Some of them were unable to come back from that.”

In these instances, she said you don’t have to be a major terrorist target, such as a stadium, or public monument, to suffer significant losses.

“You could just as easily be a tea shop in a city centre in the North of England,” she said. “One of the things I’ve always said is ‘you may think that you’re okay, but you don’t really know what your neighbours are doing, and who they’re involved with’. So there’s a saying in the insurance industry, particularly for terrorism, which is ‘you don’t have to be a target to be a victim’.”

Rebecca detailed how Rokstone has rolled out its recently launched US Terrorism product for brokers to access on an easy-to-use digital platform.

This way of selling terrorism cover is fairly unique among underwriters in the US, but Rebecca said that given all large and small businesses should be protecting themselves against this peril, it makes complete sense to make the product easily accessible in this way.

“It’s high volume, low claims,” she added.

Rokstone’s plan for the class, she said, was to take this digital approach to distribution into countries around the world, through the ready-made platforms of iSure and iFarm.

A UK Terrorism product is very soon to be launched, and Rebecca revealed plans to then expand into the European Economic Area.

Other territories she said were being considered included Asia Pacific, Australia and Canada, as the discussion moved on to Rokstone’s overall strategy for the class.

For more on this, and to hear Rebecca’s thoughts on the current global demand for terrorism insurance, the emerging risks to look out for, and the effect of COVID-19 on terrorism risk, watch the full interview below.