Swiss Re Insurance-Linked Fund Management

Original Risk: A Society for Change Agents

JBA and ImageCat launch consistent view of global flood risk


For the first time the insurance and reinsurance industry can map all their flood exposures for 168 countries, giving them a single, consistent view of all their global flood risks, thanks to a partnership between JBA Risk Management and ImageCat.

The lack of a consistent, single view of flood exposures and ability to map floods globally has provided a major difficulty for insurers and reinsurers with global exposures, commented Jill Boulton, Director of JBA Risk Management. “Rivers flow across country boundaries, sometimes through several countries. Assessing exposure across all countries was both complicated and inaccurate because the available maps varied in resolution and modelling technologies.”

JBA, the leading provider of UK flood maps, took a first and important step towards providing a global flood risk mapping solution with the release of its Global Flood Map in 2013. Now JBA’s Global Flood Map has been made available in ImageCat’s new analytical platform inhance™ (which we wrote about recently here), allowing users to quickly and easily identify where their exposures lie in relation to the maps’ flood outlines across all the world’s major river basins.

Boulton continued; “The current trend towards more erratic weather systems globally brings with it a greater risk of floods. Just recently, for example, three-months-worth of rain hit the Balkans in the space of a few days. Initial estimates indicate damages of more than one billion euros in both Bosnia and Serbia.”

inhance offers JBA’s Global Flood Maps as part of its comprehensive range of hazard datasets. By using the JBA flood maps in inhance international property owners, insurers, reinsurers and also insurance linked securities and investment managers can get a better understanding of their flood exposures at address level, particularly for areas where they have non-modelled risks.

With flood increasingly finding its way into ILS managers portfolios through collateralized reinsurance and private deals the need for a global view of flood risk is now evident in the ILS space as well as traditional reinsurance. ImageCat and JBA are providing a very good solution to enable managers of risk capital, be they traditional or alternative, to assess and quantify their exposures to the peril of flood.

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