MISSILE CHASING in war torn territories may not sound very attractive, but a move into such corners of the Middle East has proved good business for Tysers’ War and Terrorism team, which has made a name for itself through its activities in some of the most politically unstable areas of the world.

Working with its various partners around world, has given Tysers a reputation as one of the biggest placing broker into the London market of specialist unstable business, a good example of the Lloyd’s model of identifying and serving a specialist market with its comprehensive cover against all aspects of Political Violence, Terrorism and Political Risk.

Tysers has met the insurance needs of major clients in Thailand, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Ukraine and Venezuela, protecting their broad portfolio of assets and meeting more than $200 million of claims in the last 6 years. It is a prime example of how the firm can demonstrate its expertise in placing these difficult risks and, crucially, how well it can perform on the claims side.

What is unique to Tysers is how closely the broking team works alongside the claims team – for example, sitting next to each other in the London head office and travelling together. That contrasts with larger competitors, whose claims teams may well be in another part of the country or even in another country altogether.

At times, loss adjusters will not be able to get immediate access in some of these territories. After a recent air strike led to a new claim in the Middle East, the Tysers’ loss adjuster would wait until one of the occasional two-day cease-fires was declared between the two parties, before going in to survey the risk.

Assessing risk in these territories is no easy task: the Tysers team will get “proof of life” that a building is still standing at the time it is insured, they will try to get an understanding of where the rebels are at the time and whether they are in the area of the asset. Analysts from specialist firms like AKE, Control Risks and IHS can also provide intelligence before the risk is underwritten.

Buying comprehensive cover in territories does not come cheap: rates can hit the dizzy heights of 40% online – a premium of $4 million to secure $10 million of comprehensive all risks cover for a year. That is probably one of the highest rates on any cover in the London market at present, and probably in the world too, and compares with a current rate for cover in the Palestinian-controlled Gaza Strip, for example, of just 1%.

Our specialist skills in distressed and challenging environments and sectors help us maintain value, as various insurance lines become increasingly commoditised and automated”, says Harry Simpson, Head of Tysers’ War and Terrorism Team. “We do balance our high risk portfolio with business in more benign territories such as Europe and Canada, but we are always keeping an eye out for new emerging markets, and have recently looking at opportunities in Pakistan and Zimbabwe.

For more information on Terrorism insurance, please contact Harry Simpson, Head of War & Terrorism. Tel: +44 (0)20 3037 8319; Email: harry.simpson@tysers.com