SkyWatch, STARR to Offer Usage-Based Insurance to Drone Industry

April 3, 2018

SkyWatch, a data analysis, risk-assessment and risk-reduction platform for the drone industry, has signed an exclusive partnership deal with Starr Companies (Starr) to offer a telematics-based UAV insurance platform.

The partnership will allow Starr to expand their existing UAV insurance product, and offer telematics-based insurance to UAV operators.

SkyWatch’s mobile application is currently available on an invite-only basis on iOS and Android to both business and recreational operators. The application connects to many unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) of choice and allows operators to get real-time hazard warnings based from the drone’s telemetry, calculating a proprietary “safety score” for each flight.

The proprietary “safety score” can be used to set an industry benchmark for operators, who will be more aware of how they fly, and will be able to improve their score as they practice better, safer flights. Additionally, qualified operators can purchase insurance based on, among other things, this safety score. Safer pilots with high scores could see their insurance premiums decrease over time.

SkyWatch’s software gathers a variety of data sources and uses artificial intelligence-based algorithms to analyze risks for drone operators. For example, in DJI drones, these include more than 30 different drone sensors to predict and assist in preventing potential failures before they ever occur, hyper-local weather (wind, precipitation, and temperature), 3-D airspace/ground, and crowd density.

Steve Blakey, president and CEO of Starr Insurance Holdings, SkyWatch delivers the ability for Starr’s aviation business unit to obtain the proper data which can be used for better insights on the unique risk a UAV presents.

“Drones are a perfect fit for usage-based insurance. Since most drones involve operations from a mobile device, they are connected in their nature,” added Blakey. “As more and more platforms become connected, we expect to be able to offer the same solution for more emerging technologies.”

Starr Companies (or Starr) is the worldwide marketing name for the operating insurance and travel assistance companies and subsidiaries of Starr International Company, Inc. and for the investment business of C. V. Starr & Co., Inc. and its subsidiaries. Through its operating insurance companies, Starr provides property, casualty, and accident and health insurance products as well as a range of specialty coverages including aviation, marine, energy and excess casualty insurance.

SkyWatch is a data analytics platform for drone operators and fleet managers to track their safety metrics and reduce flight risks preflight, in-flight (real time) and post-flight.

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